NEW DELHI, Nov 3:
Terming terrorism a global problem, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh today called for isolating all countries that have adopted terrorism as their state policy, in a reference to Pakistan.
Speaking at the curtain raiser of the first ever India-Uzbekistan joint exercise ‘Dustlik 2019’ in Tashkent, Singh said defence cooperation is crucial to the bilateral ties between India and Uzbekistan. The drill will be held from November 4 to 13.
In the exercise, an Indian Army contingent will train along with Uzbekistan Army. The exercise will enable sharing of best practices and experiences between the armed forces of the two countries and would lead to greater operational effectiveness, the defence ministry said.
“Terrorism is a global problem. There are many examples where some countries have adopted terrorism as their state policy. The need of the hour is to condemn and isolate such countries,” Singh said without naming Pakistan.
After the Uri terror attack, India has been trying to corner Pakistan by seeking to isolate it diplomatically on the issue of cross-border terrorism.
Singh yesterday, while addressing the 18th meeting of the Council of Heads of Government of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO), had called upon the member countries to strengthen and implement all the existing the international laws and mechanisms, without exception or double standards, to combat terrorism and its enablers.
Pakistan is also a member of the SCO.
On Saturday, Singh had met his Uzbek counterpart Major General Bakhodir Nizamovich Kurbanov and discussed ways to intensify their defence ties. Three MoUs were also signed including one on military cooperation between the two nations.
Describing ‘Dustlik 2019’ as an example of the growing defence collaboration between India and Uzbekistan, Singh expressed confidence that the soldiers of the two countries will stand shoulder-to-shoulder in the time of need.
He assured the Government of Uzbekistan that the Indian armed forces would provide all possible assistance to their Uzbek counterparts for their modernisation and capacity building. He also promised India’s enhanced support to Uzbekistan in military medicine, saying that the MoU signed after his bilateral meeting with the Defence Minister of Uzbekistan is a step in the direction.
He affirmed India’s commitment of developing a state-of-the-art IT complex in Armed Forces Academy of Uzbekistan for the benefit of their soldiers. “We will send a team of expert IT professionals and English language instructors to share their expertise with the students of Knowledge Academy,” he added.
Identifying ‘Military Technical Cooperation’ as an area of huge potential, Singh said India is always ready to share its accomplishments and achievements with Uzbekistan in this field. He expressed confidence that both countries will benefit from this cooperation. (PTI)