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India, Russia to step up security ties

| | New Delhi

India and Russia on Friday expressed confidence in the strength of their relationship while acknowledging that some ‘unfriendly forces’ or ‘unfriendly actors’ may try to create hindrances in the bilateral ties through adverse campaigns.

During a meeting between Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh and the nine-member Russian delegation led by the Director of the Federal Security Service of the Russian Federation (FSB), Alexander Bortnikov, the two sides also held detailed discussions on the current security scenario in the region, radicalisation and rise of Islamic terrorism. The countries that have good collaboration on intelligence and security issues have decided to intensify cooperation.

The FSB is the main security agency of Russia responsible to deal with counter-intelligence, prevent and investigate counter-terrorism, take care of internal and border security along with surveillance. FSB is the main successor of the KGB that was erstwhile USSR’s main security agency.

The Russian delegation included the representatives from FSB’s Departments of Constitution Protection and Counter Terrorism, Intelligence Analysis and International Liaison and Scientific and Technical. The Indian side included Union Home Secretary, Rajiv Mehrishi and senior officers from the Ministry of Home Affairs and Ministry of External Affairs.

During the course of delegation level meeting that lasted for about 45 minutes, the Home Minister highlighted episodes related to Pakistan-sponsored terrorism while terming it to be a threat not only to India but the entire international community. In this regard he reiterated India has a policy of zero tolerance for terrorism.

“In this regard the two sides also acknowledged that there may be some ‘unfriendly forces’ or ‘unfriendly actors’ who may be trying to create hindrances in the bilateral relationship but such adverse campaigns are incapable of affecting the deep understanding bolstered by regular dialogues and mutual cooperation,” MHA sources said.

While the officials refused to name who these “unfriendly forces” are, it was clear that the hint was towards Pakistan that is constantly trying to create misunderstanding between the two countries.

Singh also mentioned that Inter-Agency cooperation between the two countries should cover bilateral, regional and international issues while emphasising to expand the sphere of that bilateral cooperation to include the areas of military and technical cooperation, energy sector, economic security and disaster management.

He also mentioned that during the ensuing visit of Indian delegation to Russia, he would make it a point to visit facilities such as the EMERCOM (Ministry of Emergency Situations) headquarters to explore areas of technical cooperation between the two

countries.

The EMERCOM deals with rapid response and rescue work during disasters. Home Minister will be participating in the 16th International meeting of the Heads of Special Services, Security Agencies and Law Enforcementv Organisat-

ions to be held in Russia later this year.

“The Minister informed the visiting delegation that India and Russia are all weather friends and enjoy family like relations. He said that our bilateral relations had withstood all trying times in the midst of changing nature of international and political relations,” sources said.

 
 
 
 
 

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