India will be obliged to consider all options: Pranab


Gangtok : If Pakistan cannot keep the promises made to India on not supporting terrorist activities, India would be obliged to “consider the entire range of options that exist” to protect itself, External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee said here Friday.

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“Terrorism remains a scourge for our region. If a country cannot keep the assurances that it has given, then it obliges us to consider the entire range of options that exist to protect our interests and people from this menace,” Mukherjee said here in a statement, referring to Pakistan.

“We have made repeated appeals to our neighbours over the years to ensure that they do not provide support to terrorist activities and to dismantle the terrorist infrastructure… but our pleas have been ignored in spite of assurances given by them,” Mukherjee said.

His message at the inauguration of the three-day international conference on ‘Sub-regionalism Approach to Regional Integration in South Asia: Prospects and Opportunities’ here was read out by Sikkim University Vice-Chancellor Prof Mahendra P. Lama.

Mukherjee said the terror attacks on Mumbai reflected the extent to which the terrorists had spread their network in Pakistan. However, he did not elaborate on the action to be taken by the government following Pakistan’s failure to act on its assurance of dismantling terror infrastructure on its territory.

“The Mumbai terrorist attack is the latest instance of how sub-regionalism, regionalism and multilaterism are directly threatened by non-state actors with the aid of para-state apparatus,” Mukherjee said.

He said that India would fine-tune its priorities to deal with terrorism.

On the political situation in Pakistan, Mukherjee noted that the internal security of that country continued to deteriorate “leading to emergence of multiple centres of power”.

“The emergence of multiple centres of power has been reflected in attempts at cross border infiltration as also the increase in ceasefire violations besides the appalling terrorist attacks in Mumbai recently,” he said.