Antony cautions against non-state actors in Indian Ocean

September 15th, 2008 - 11:11 pm ICT by IANS  

TalibanNew Delhi, Sep 15 (IANS) Defence Minister A.K. Antony Monday said India need to secure the sea lanes of the Indian Ocean region from non-state actors like the Tamil Tigers to ensure its energy security that was vital for its progressing economy.“For its further growth and prosperity, India clearly needs a secure and peaceful periphery and unrestrained sources of energy. India is strategically located, overlooking the important sea lanes and in a very unstable region of the continent,” Antony said at a function organized by the Centre For Joint Warfare Studies, a strategic think tank.

“The real threats to international security would arise from states that would avoid interdependence, particularly with neighbours, and from non-state actors like the Taliban and Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam,” Antony added.

Antony also said that India can use “force projection” as a means for furthering its national interests.

“We have unsettled territorial disputes with our largest neighbours. Some of them are seriously afflicted by terrorism, itself a cause for our concern as a neighbour. This is further aggravated when that terrorism spills over into India, through state sponsorship or otherwise,” Antony said, hinting at Pakistan abetting terrorism in Jammu and Kashmir.

Calling for constant vigil and preparedness to defend the country’s vital interests, Antony said: “A large number of non-state armed groups have sanctuaries in our neighbouring states who use these bases and resources to carry out acts of terrorism across India.”

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