Politics, Asia - Pacific

Indian government dismisses al-Qaeda threat

Al-Qaeda chief threatens with ‘unrelenting blows’, India says ‘they cannot be taken seriously’

Ahmad Adil   | 11.07.2019
Indian government dismisses al-Qaeda threat

CHANDIGARH, India

The Indian government Thursday downplayed a threat by an al-Qaeda head terrorist via a video message.

“Our security forces are well equipped and capable of maintaining our territorial integrity and sovereignty,” Raveesh Kumar, spokesman for External Affairs Ministry, said during a media briefing in New Delhi, India’s capital.

On Wednesday, Al-Qaeda chief Ayman Al-Zawahiri in a video message called for “liberating the jihad in Kashmir from the clutches of Pakistan’s intelligence agencies” and asked militants in Kashmir to focus on “unrelenting blows” against India.

“I am of the view that the mujahideen in Kashmir at this stage at least should single-mindedly focus on inflicting unrelenting blows on the Indian Army and government so as to bleed the Indian economy and make India suffer sustained losses in manpower and equipment. In doing so, the mujahideen must persevere patiently,” he said.

Kumar said: “We keep hearing such threats but they can't be taken seriously."

US-India trade talks

A U.S. delegation led by Christopher Wilson, assistant U.S. trade representative for South and Central Asia, are in New Delhi for talks with Indian counterparts.

India imposed tariffs on 28 US products exported to India mid-June after US withdrew its concessions for India on June 1.

On the trade talks of the U.S.-India officials in New Delhi, Kumar said the meetings are ongoing.

“Our approach is to engage with them constructively and in a positive manner,” he said.

U.S. President Donald Trump this week said on Twitter that tariffs from India on US products were “unacceptable”.

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