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US, India have differences on Libya, Syria: Blake

A top Obama administration official acknowledged that there are differences between India and the US on issues like Libya and Syria.



Washington: Acknowledging that there are
differences between India and the US on issues like Libya and
Syria, a top Obama administration official has said the two
countries need to "redouble" their efforts to work together to
reduce any misunderstanding between them.

"I think there has been an evolution in India`s voting
record in the UN Security Council. We have had some
differences (with India)," Assistant Secretary of State for
South and Central Asia, Robert Blake, told reporters here.

"You pointed to Libya, I agree with that, I would
also say that we got differences on Syria. That underlines the
need for us to redouble our efforts to work together to reduce
any misunderstanding," Blake said in response to a question.

The United States clearly explained what it is trying to
achieve, he said.

"I think we all are trying to achieve ultimately same
objectives in the Middle East. And sometimes it is the
question of tactics, but this just reinforces the importance
of dialogue," he observed.

Noting that the US and India have worked through issues
much more complicated than those in the past, Blake hoped that
the two countries would be able to manage them as well.

Responding to questions about the reform of the UN
Security Council, Blake said the US is on record on it as
President Barack Obama endorsed India`s candidature during his
trip to the country last November.

"This process is still ongoing to try to figure out the
expansion of the Security Council, both permanent and
non-permanent members, and so that is really up to India now
to try to pursue that process.

"Of course we would be co-coordinating that. We have many
many priorities as well in the Council right now, foremost
among them those related to the Middle East," Blake said.

He said the United States is now trying to develop a
special relationship with Indian states so as to benefit the
ties from growing dynamism of these states.

Blake said Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and
External Affairs Minister S M Krishna chaired a very
successful strategic dialogue in July in India in which the
two countries made very important progress to advance what
Obama has called "one of our defining partnerships for the
21st century."

In addition to cooperation on counter-terrorism issues,
Blake said the two countries are taking steps to advance the
burgeoning trade relationship.

PTI

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