Pak, China and Iran not invited to Indian air show starting February 9

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New Delhi, Feb 2(ANI): India has not invited Pakistan, China or Iran to South Asia's biggest air show- Aero India 2011- which will witness participation of more than 60 countries in Bangalore next week.

Among the countries participating in the airshow are Afghanistan, Australia, Bangladesh, Brazil, Germany, Greece, France, Israel, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Mongolia, Malaysia, Nigeria, Poland, Russia, Singapore, Sweden, Sri Lanka, UK, US, Uzbekistan and Vietnam.

Secretary Defence Production R K Singh said: "The list of invitees is drawn up in consultation with the Ministry of External Affairs ( MEA)."

"China was invited in previous Aero-India editions but they did not come...so they probably were not invited this time....We go by the advise of MEA. Our relations with China are improving and we have no serious problems with Iran," he added.

Pakistan and India, who have fought three wars since their independence from the British in 1947, have no military-to-military contacts.

Trade links in recent years have improved between India and China, who fought in 1962 but strategic ties are frosty as territorial disputes remain unresolved despite several rounds of negotiations.

The Defence Production Secretary did not comment on New Delhi's decision to block Iran from the event.

Aero India 2011, which begins on February 9, has also invited a delegation from war-torn Afghanistan as part of India's national policy to build better ties with the country.

"We have good cooperation with Afghanistan and so we are delighted it is sending a delegation to the airshow. We want such cooperation to grow," Singh said.

About 350 official and trade delegations from 30 countries- including Australia, Britain, France, Germany, Russia, Germany and the United States- will participate in the five-day event. (ANI)

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