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'Insurgents may derail Indo-Bangla ties'

world Updated: Aug 08, 2010 16:35 IST
bilateral security cooperation

Seeking enhanced bilateral security cooperation, India has cautioned that insurgents had the "potential" to derail its friendly ties with Bangladesh, even as it commended Dhaka's efforts to root out terrorism from this country.

India "deeply appreciates" the efforts of Bangladesh to tackle terrorism as the menace was a common concern of the two neighbours, Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee said in Dhaka on Saturday.

The two sides will continue to be closely engaged for enhanced bilateral security cooperation, he told a press briefing after the signing ceremony of a $ 1 billion loan deal for Bangladesh, the largest line of credit received by Dhaka.

Mukherjee identified "security cooperation" as an area that engaged the attention of both the countries "given our common desire to root out the forces of extremism and terrorism from our midst".

"Insurgents and insurgent groups have the potential to affect our relations," warned Mukherjee, the first senior Indian leader to visit Bangladesh after Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina's landmark trip to New Delhi in January.

Bangladesh and India had signed three agreements to combat terrorism and cross border crimes alongside mutual legal assistance and transfer of sentenced persons and a MoU on power cooperation during Hasina's India tour.

Hasina had promised not to allow Indian separatist groups to use Bangladeshi soil.

Arbinda Rajkhowa, the chief of banned separatist group United Liberation Front of Asom (ULFA), along with its deputy military chief was handed over to Indian authorities by Bangladesh in December last year.