`Osama`s killing will not change Indo-Pak dialogue discourse`

India said "momentous" killing of al Qaeda chief Osama bin Laden in Pakistan will not change the discourse of Indo-Pak dialogue.

Updated: May 04, 2011, 18:04 PM IST

New Delhi: India on Wednesday said "momentous"
killing of al Qaeda chief Osama bin Laden in Pakistan will not
change the discourse of Indo-Pak dialogue but made it clear
that use of terrorism as a policy to further strategic goals
was "unacceptable."

Asserting that the killing vindicates India`s position
that without the elimination of the terrorist safe havens and
sanctuaries in Pakistan there cannot be end to the global war
on terror, government sources said "what was sensational was
the fact that Bin Laden was found living in large mansion in
Abbotabad....only 80 kms from Islamabad."

How Osama could have been living there without the
support from the Pakistani establishment is one aspect which
is being examined, the sources said.

Maintaining that Osama`s killing will not change the
"universe of the discourse" between India and Pakistan, the
sources said, "Talks with Pakistan will continue...We have to
engage them with these issues (terrorism). We have to focus on
the issues of concern that we have with Pakistan...

"They have serious problems within that country at the
moment confronting the monster that they have played a role in
creating....but we have to engage them on the issues of
normalisation, whether it comes to trade, humanitarian
exchange, prisoners, cross LoC trade in Jammu and Kashmir..".

Admitting that much more pressure was required to be
put on Pakistan to deal with terrorism, sources said India
certainly was concerned over the presence of terrorist groups
like LeT, JeM and Hizbul Mujahideen which remain a serious
threat to India.

Apart from being vigilant to this factor and
safeguarding its interest, India would continue to press this
point with its US interlocutors and as well as in discussion
with Pakistan, the sources said while noting that there cannot
be any "selective approach" in dealing with these terror
groups.

On whether the incident would push US to put more
pressure Pakistan to deal with the terrorism directed at
India, the sources said the US was not going to fight India`s
battle and it was wrong to expect that.

Noting that India was "alone" in its battle as each
country was directed by their own interests, the sources said
there will be always strategic and security compulsions
between the US and Pakistan leading to some decisions which
will not be comforting to the country.

In that context, it is better for India to normalise
relations with Pakistan, engage with them on various issues.

"Pakistan`s strategic value will remain," the sources
said. Though the effort was to reduce contentiousness in
Indo-Pak relations through dialogue, India will put as
"passionately" its concerns over terrorism as ever, the
government sources said, adding this will include punishment
for all those responsible for the Mumbai terror attacks.

On Pakistan Foreign Secretary Salman Bashir`s remarks
that the demand for justice for 26/11 was outdated, sources
said "that cannot be a serious statement."

Commenting on the situation in Afghanistan, the
sources reiterated India`s position of inclusive transition
and no dilution of `red lines` on reintegration and
reconciliation of Taliban and said the concerns over
reconciliation remains as "valid" as before.

It would be wrong to assume that there would be faster
withdrawal of the US and other forces from Afghanistan, as a
result of Osama`s elimination. "Nobody who is committed to
Afghanistan would want a precipitous withdrawal of coalition
forces," the sources said, noting that "writing on the wall"
does not indicate "cut and run" strategy by Western forces.

Asserting that elimination of Osama does not mean end
of "jihadi mindset", sources said "Now to leave Afghanistan
would be repetition of what had happened 20-30 years earlier.

The US has learnt the lessons from that".
The sources also maintained that there was "very thin"
line between terror groups like al Qaeda, which has already
been dispersed in several affiliated groups, and JeM and JuD
as their ideologies were fused and even after death of Osama,
they will continue espousing their violent agenda.

The sources also favoured participation of all
regional countries in achieving stability and peace in
Afghanistan including, Central Asian nations, China, India and
Pakistan.

On the increasing public sentiment that if US can do
an operation unilaterally why India cannot, sources said
"Foreign policy is not wish fulfillment. We have to deal with
the realities....Pakistan in not a push over....There is a
reasonable, sober way of dealing with neighbour."

They said it was easy to be "hawkish" about Pakistan
but bringing it on its "knees" was neither the idea nor it is
good for India.

Recalling Pakistan`s Army Chief Gen Ashfaq Parvez
Kayani`s remarks that his army has "broken" the backbone of
terrorists and will soon prevail over them, the sources hoped
that Pakistan "walks the talk".

However, the sources, without naming army or
Pakistan`s intelligence agency-- ISI, said the effect of
Osama`s presence and death, near Islamabad, on the role of
"larger than life" image institutions in Pakistan was still
being assessed.

PTI