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India constitutes high-level committee to look into security concerns raised by US on criminal nexus

NEW DELHI: India on Wednesday said it has constituted a high-level enquiry committee to look into all the relevant aspects regarding the concerns shared by the United States on bilateral security cooperation.

External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Arindam Bagchi said in a statement today that the Indian government will be taking "necessary follow-up action" based on the findings of the enquiry committee.

"We have already said that during the course of discussions with the US on bilateral security cooperation, the US side shared some inputs pertaining to nexus between organized criminals, gun runners, terrorists and others," Bagchi said in a statement.

"We had also indicated that India takes such inputs seriously since they impinge on our national security interests as well, and relevant departments were already examining the issue," the statement added.

The MEA said that the enquiry committee was constituted on November 18.

"In this context, it is informed that on 18 November 2023, the Government of India constituted a high-level Enquiry Committee to look into all the relevant aspects of the matter," the MEA spokesperson said.

He added, "Government of India will take necessary follow-up action based on the findings of the Enquiry Committee".

On November 22, the MEA had informed that the US had shared some inputs pertaining to a "nexus between organized criminals, gun runners, terrorists and others" during the course of recent discussions on India-US security cooperation.

Bagchi had said that India takes such inputs seriously since it impinges on its own security interests as well. He said the inputs are the cause of concern for both countries and necessary follow-up action is being taken.

Earlier, the UK-based Financial Times published a report claiming that the US thwarted a plan to allegedly assassinate India-designated terrorist Gurpatwant Singh Pannun on American soil.

US had informed India of concerns regarding the alleged plot to kill Pannun, the Financial Times reported quoting people familiar with the matter.

However, the news report failed to elaborate whether the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) in the US was involved in the thwarting of the plan nor does it mention the specific nature of the communication between the US and India.

The news report citing people familiar with the matter goes on to claim, that US federal prosecutors have filed a sealed indictment against at least one alleged perpetrator of the plot in a New York district court.

The US Justice Department and the FBI have also not issued any formal statement on such claims.

 

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