Tillerson-Sushma discuss terror, ways to firm strategic co-op

RSTV Bureau
New Delhi: U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson with Minister for External Affairs Sushma Swaraj in New Delhi, Oct 25, 2017. Photo - PTI

New Delhi: U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson with Minister for External Affairs Sushma Swaraj in New Delhi, Oct 25, 2017.
Photo – PTI

External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj held talks with visiting US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson on Wednesday. The wide ranging talks stressed on strengthening further the existing strong relations between the two nations.

The talks were also blunt message to Pakistan as after holding wide-ranging talks, the two countries asked Pakistan to dismantle the terrorist infrastructure operating from its soil, asserting that terror havens inside that country would not be tolerated.

Tillerson had emphasised on the same while holding talks with Pakistan Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi on Tuesday.

Tillerson said he had asked the Pakistani leadership to take action against terror groups and said an enhancement in their capabilities may pose a threat to the government in Islamabad. “Terror havens will not be tolerated,” Tillerson said at a joint press conference with Swaraj.

Swaraj, on her part, said Pakistan must dismantle the terror infrastructure, insisting that any country backing terror groups must be held accountable.

A host of issues, including ways to further boost defence and security cooperation and ramp up trade ties, were discussed by Swaraj and Tillerson.

The US Secretary of State said the Trump administration was ready to share its best technology for India’s military modernisation, adding that it looked forward to discussing deals for F16 and F18 fighter jets with New Delhi.

He said India was crucial to US-Afghanistan strategy and his government was looking at strengthening cooperation with India in the Indo-Pacific region.

Swaraj said she raised the issue of H1B visa with him and requested Tillerson not to take action that might adversely affect Indians.

US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, who arrived in India late yesterday, is also slated to meet Prime Minister Modi.

Tillerson is the second high-ranking official of the Trump Administration to visit India in the last two months. US Defence Secretary James Mattis visited India last month.

(With inputs from PTI)