Chinese troops in PoK a concern: Antony
New Delhi: India on Wednesday reiterated its concern over the presence of Chinese military personnel in Pakistan administered Kashmir, saying that it had already conveyed its objections to Beijing.
Defence Minister AK Antony told reporters after opening the four-day Navy commanders conference here that India was aware of the presence of China`s Peoples Liberation Army troops in Pakistani Kashmir.
"We are aware of their presence there. We have conveyed our concern to China in this regard," Antony said in reply to questions regard the presence of some combat engineers among the 3,000 odd Chinese in Pakistan controlled Kashmir.
"Over the last many years, we are consistently developing our own military capabilities so that we can meet any challenge to protect our territory and our sovereignty," he said.
To a question on China`s objections to India exploring oil in parts of the South China Sea off Vietnam that Beijing claims to be its own territory, Antony refused comment -- Vietnamese President Truong Tan Sang is in the capital for talks with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.
However, External Affairs Minister SM Krishna, ahead of the talks, told reporters that all bilateral issues will be on the table for discussion between the two sides. Krishna was answering a question if the South China Sea issue will be part of discussions with the Vietnamese delegation.
To another question, Antony said the Admiral Goshkov aircraft carrier that India has bought from Russia, where it is presently undergoing a refit, will definitely be delivered in December 2012.
Top commanders of the Air Force and Navy are meeting here to review the security situation within the country and in the maritime domain and to take stock of the operational preparedness of the two Forces.
The three-day Commanders Conference of IAF and Navy would be chaired by their chiefs Air Chief Marshal N A K Browne and Admiral Nirmal Verma respectively.
"Air Force will take stock of its operational preparedness and will review the data base concerning maintenance, administration and other aspects of the force," IAF officials said earlier.
All the top commanders of the Navy will have a brainstorming session over issues involving maritime and coastal security of the country.
"Several issues concerning preparedness of force in the maritime and coastal domain, implementation of the ongoing projects and future development would be discussed over a period of three days," Navy officials said.
On Tuesday, commanders of the three services were addressed by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh during the Combined Commanders Conference.
Observing that the international strategic and political environment has deteriorated, Singh cautioned the Services that the terrorist groups targeting India were now highly networked, nimble-footed, more lethal.
The three Services hold their Commanders Conference twice every year to review their operational readiness and take stock of the security situation in and around the country.
(With PTI/IANS inputs)
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