Terror, Afghanistan, Syria figure in Ban's talks with India

Ban Ki Moon
New Delhi, Apr 28: Terrorism, alarming security situation in Afghanistan, worrisome situation in Syria and disputes between Sudan and South Sudan were some of the key international issues discussed between UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon and Indian leadership here with both wanting to enhance their cooperation on these issues.

Ban, who is on a four-day visit, also said the global body encourages India to pursue bilateral and multi-lateral dialogue with nuclear-possessing states to permanently eliminate the threat posed by proliferation of nuclear weapons. He held a series of meetings with leaders, including Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Lok Sabha Speaker Meira Kumar, UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi and External Affairs Minister S M Krishna, during which the sides also discussed international and regional terrorism, including in Af-Pak region.

During the meeting, Krishna also said the fight against piracy and international cooperation in counter-terrorism are global challenges to which India attaches priority, official spokesperson in the MEA Syed Akbaruddin said.

Briefing the reporters after his parleys, Ban said "the situation in Afghanistan is a sources of concern" and recent attack are a "sources of alarm".

He said both India and Pakistan could play an important role in stablising the situation in the war-torn country and pitched for a multi-pronged strategy which included socio- economic development packages and continuation of the reconciliation process.

He also said the upcoming Chicago meet on Afghanistan will ponder upon the crucial drawdown of the US-led Western forces by 2014. On Syria, he said violence and killings were "unacceptable" and must stop and there should be greater restraint by Syrian government which should undertake an inclusive political dialogue. He also talked about the deployment of UN "supervision" mission in Syria.


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