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'Nukes in hands of volatile states can pose a threat'

Addressing a conference in Munich the National Security Adviser voices his concern in an apparent reference to Pak.

india Updated: Feb 10, 2008 20:08 IST

India on Sunday said it faces threats from countries that are "authoritarian, anti-democratic and anti-secular" and voiced concern over dangers posed by nuclear weapons in the hands of "volatile states", in an apparent reference to Pakistan.

Highlighting South Asia's security challenges, National Security Adviser MK Narayanan pointed out that South Asia has been a "source" as well as a "destination" of proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and said it was a matter of concern if proper steps were not put in place.

"What are the key challenges to Asian and global security today? The challenges are many. Quite a few are security-related and are highly daunting in nature," Narayanan said addressing an international conference on 'Security Policy' in Munich.

"First and foremost are existential threats and vulnerabilities that pluralistic, secular and democratic countries such as India - with rapidly modernizing economies - face from nations in the region that are authoritarian, anti-democratic and anti-secular, approximating to failed states," he said, without naming any country.

He listed proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and terrorism emanating from Pakistan-Afghanistan "region" as the dangers to South Asia as well as the entire world.

"Credible reports suggest that the region has been both a source and a destination for proliferation of WMD material and equipment - a situation that is cause for concern if proper steps are not put in place," Narayanan said, adding "threats to stability from nuclear weapons in the hands of volatile states cannot be discounted."