Will India increase it ties with NATO?

From Rajat Pandit, the Times of IndiaThe North Atlantic Treaty Organization (Nato), even as it charts out roadmaps for a sizeable US-led military training mission in Afghanistan till 2024 and a post-conflict role in Libya, wants a deeper engagement with India in fields ranging from counter-terrorism and anti-piracy to cyber-security and ballistic missile defence (BMD).

"It’s important for India and Nato to have a dialogue…it will ultimately depend on India where it wants the relationship to go," said US permanent representative to Nato, Ivo H Daalder, adding that senior alliance officials were in touch with their Indian counterparts on it. . . .

The 28-member Nato, which has expanded over the last decade to include erstwhile Warsaw Pact countries like Hungary and Poland, feels it’s time India jettisoned its Cold War-non-aligned mindset for greater international security.

"Nato, for instance, is getting into BMD technology in a major way…We can share knowledge, train together…We, after all, face similar threats," said another senior official, adding that the alliance was now shaping "a special partnership" with even Russia.

India, however, remains wary of being closely associated with any multi-nation military arrangement unless it’s under the UN flag, positioning itself as a neutral player, even though it has forged expansive bilateral military ties with leading Nato countries like the US, France and UK.  (photo: YaHind News)