Congress terms US remarks on Anna fast ‘objectionable’

August 12th, 2011 - 11:27 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Aug 12 (IANS) The Congress Friday termed as “objectionable” a US State Department spokesperson’s call for “restraint” in handling of peaceful protests in the context of a proposed fast by Anna Hazare, and said India cannot tolerate interference in its internal matters.

“Our external affairs ministry has already issued a statement. It is definitely an objectionable statement on the part of US. We cannot tolerate any interference in our internal matters,” Congress spokesperson Rashid Alvi told IANS.

State Department spokesperson Victoria Nuland told reporters in Washington DC, US, that it counted on a democratic India to “exercise restraint” against peaceful protesters.

“As you know, we support the right of peaceful, non-violent protest around the world,” Nuland said when asked if the US was concerned over alleged police brutality against peaceful demonstrators in India.

“That said, India is a democracy, and we count on India to exercise appropriate democratic restraint in the way it deals with peaceful protest,” Nuland said, responding to a question about planned protests against corruption Aug 16.

The external affairs ministry termed the US spokesperson’s remarks as “needless” and said freedom of speech and expression as well as of peaceful assembly are enshrined in the Constitution.

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