India, US slam Pak on its terror stand

India and the US on Tuesday together condemned terrorism and Pakistan’s support to it, with both countries slamming Islamabad’s differentiation between good terrorism and bad terrorism.

At a joint news conference by External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and her US counterpart John Kerry, Swaraj said, “There was a meeting of minds on the issue of terrorism.” She was referring to the second India-US Strategic and Commercial Dialogue. “We agreed that no nation should be allowed to have double standards on terrorism by differentiating between good and bad terrorists.”

Kerry agreed with her in his remarks: “There is no good terrorism or bad terrorism.”

The second India-US Strategic and Commercial Dialogue comes immediately after the signing of the Logistics Exchange Memorandum Of Agreement (LEMOA) in Washington DC between the two countries on Monday. While Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar is on a three-day visit to the US from Monday where he has met US Secretary of Defence Ashton Carter and other senior officials, Kerry and US Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker are in New Delhi.

Kerry said that the two countries have deepened their cooperation in defence, energy, and cyber security. The US would want its civil nuclear cooperation with India to take shape in setting up of reactors, he added.

The ease of doing business and visa regimes were among the important commercial issues discussed.

The bilateral trade between India and the US was $109 billion in 2015.

At the opening plenary, Swaraj said, “Some of the new dialogue mechanisms that we announced at our last meeting have already met, including the high-level consultations, policy planning dialogue, and the Track 1.5 Cyber Dialogue. Others, like the bilateral Oceans Dialogue, are also in the planning. In accordance with the roadmap for the Joint Strategic Vision, we have launched a Maritime Security Dialogue. Our Trilateral with Japan has moved from dialogue into action in exciting areas of regional connectivity and HA/DR.”