Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s Next Stop: India and then Indonesia
US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will be in New Delhi on July 19 to attend the second round of US-India strategic dialogue. Sources told The Pioneer that Clinton will be in New Delhi for two days and then head for the ASEAN Regional Forum in Bali. The dialogue will be co-chaired by External Affairs Minister SM Krishna.
Sources said a host of bilateral and international issues will come up for discussion but focus will be on the evolving situation in India’s neighbourhood —Afghanistan and Pakistan — alongside the recent NSG decision on ban on supplying ENR technology to non-NPT countries.
According to sources, besides the Afghanistan situation, the dialogue will also take up issues related to East Asia, South East Asia, trade relations, G20, financial crisis and climate change negotiations and counter terrorism.
New Delhi believes that US will be “sharing” and will be “committed” at sharing “more” information on the Mumbai trial and the issue will be pressed during the Clinton’s visit, sources told The Pioneer.
Experts believe the visit of Clinton assumes importance as India is set to get a first-hand account of how the US views the present situation in Pakistan.
Former Indian Ambassador to the US Naresh Chandra said, “The US-India Strategic dialogue is significant after the dip in US-Pakistan relationship. India can get a first-hand account from Hillary Clinton about how she views the present situation in Pakistan and the way US is dealing with terrorism.”
Former Foreign Secretary Kanwal Sibbal said, “India should take this dialogue as an opportunity to get clarity on US game plan in Afghanistan especially after Obama’s recent speech of drawdown strategy.”