Not in India during Kandahar hijack: Blackwill | india | Hindustan Times
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Not in India during Kandahar hijack: Blackwill

Blackwill told Karan Thapar's 'India Tonight' programme on CNBC that LK Advani might have spoken to his predecessor Richard Celeste during the Kandahar crisis.

india Updated: Mar 28, 2008 18:44 IST

Senior BJP leader LK Advani appears to have got it wrong when he contends that he spoke to former US Ambassador Robert Blackwill seeking Washington's help to end the 1999 Kandahar hijack crisis.



Blackwill, while responding to Advani's contention made in his memoirs

My Country, My Life

, said he was in the US during the Kandahar crisis and had come to India as Ambassador two years after the hijack crisis.



Blackwill told Karan Thapar's 'India Tonight' programme on CNBC that the former Deputy Prime Minister might have spoken to his predecessor Richard Celeste during the Kandahar crisis.



"Well, when I was Ambassador here, Advani on several occasions described this episode to me along the lines of his effort to solicit American help during that crisis, help in Dubai in giving Indian commandos access to the plane and so forth and his enormous frustration that the administration was unresponsive," the former US envoy said.



"But, of course, it was 1999 and it was the Clinton administration. I was happily at the Harward during that time," he said.



In his book, Advani says he was "deeply disappointed" when the US did not even try to help India during the crisis despite him seeking assistance from Blackwill.



Asked whether he thought Advani got the name wrong in his memoirs, Blackwill said "I take it that is the case. But not in the essence of what he did and his frustration."