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India forging links to fight terror

It needs to boost links to protect pluralism and maintaining peace in its neighbourhood, says MK Narayanan.

india Updated: Nov 29, 2006 17:19 IST

India is strengthening political and security linkages with countries in the region to combat "faith-based" terrorism with "external linkages" that has emerged as one of the biggest challenges globally, National Security Advisor MK Narayanan said on Tuesday.

Such links would help the country to protect its pluralism and democracy and maintain peace and stability in its immediate neighbourhood and beyond, Narayanan told a international seminar in New Delhi on "Growing Challenges of Terrorism with special reference to railways".

"One of the important features of faith-based terrorism is the extent of its external linkages," he said adding that in many, if not most, cases there is the element of external sponsorship - whether state-sponsored, state-supported or by non-state actors.

Narayanan also said on Tuesday most terrorist groups "tend to have a radical Islamist visage as well".

"Our effort has, hence, been to strengthen political, economic and security linkages across the entire region. We have offered a wide array of political and economic incentives to countries across the region and in some cases have helped strengthen structures for functional cooperation," he said.

Sponsorship and external linkages have "tended to fertilize indigenous terrorism", he said.

"We, are nevertheless, determined that even while dealing with the challenges, there will be no dilution of our determination to sustain India as an inclusive, open, multi-racial, multi-lingual and multi-ethnic society," he told an audience that included Robert Jamison, Deputy Administrator of the US Transportation Security Department. (More)

First Published: Nov 29, 2006 17:19 IST