Warmer India-Pakistan ties to help US war on terror: Obama

July 23rd, 2008 - 2:56 pm ICT by IANS  

A file-photo of Barack Obama

New York, July 23 (IANS) More convivial relations between India and Pakistan would help the war against militants in Afghanistan and the US should work to improve trust between the two countries, democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama has said. “A lot of what drives, it appears, motivations on the Pakistan side of the border still has to do with their concerns and suspicions about India,” Obama said at a news conference in the Jordanian capital Amman Tuesday, as reported by the US print and electronic media.

Calling the situation in Afghanistan “perilous and urgent”, he said Al Qaeda and the Taliban were mounting offensives in Afghanistan and the border region of Pakistan while plotting new attacks against the US.

He blamed the porous border between Afghanistan and Pakistan for making it difficult for the US troops to decisively defeat the Taliban and other terrorist groups in Afghanistan.

In that context, Obama underlined the importance of diplomatic efforts by the US in Pakistan, which “may include having a conversation with India and seeing if we can lessen some of the tensions between those two countries”.

“We haven’t had a conversation between the Indians and the Pakistanis that has been sustained and meaningful about how they can arrive at a more sensible arrangement between the two countries. That could relieve some of the pressure and help us go after some of these forces along the border regions,” he said, according to the transcript on the website of Washington Post.

On a trip to the Middle East, he earlier visited Iraq and Afghanistan. In Kabul, he said that Washington should start planning to transfer more US troops from Iraq to Afghanistan.

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