(NSI News Source Info) LONDON - April 3, 2009: US President Barack Obama said Thursday he was "very concerned" about extremists on the border between Pakistan and India and urged a cooling of cross-border tensions with an "effective dialogue". Obama told reporters after talks with Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on the sidelines of the G20 economic summit that they had discussed the threat posed by the militants on the frontier of the nuclear-armed neighbour states. Syed Salahuddin (L), head of the militant Hizbul Mujahideen collects the donation for the Kashmiri people during a public meeting to mark the Kashmir Solidarity Day in Muzaffarabad, the capital of the Pakistan-administered Kashmir on February 4, 2009. Around a dozen Kashmiri militant groups gathered publicly to urge Pakistan to lift bans against the Islamist organisation India blames for the Mumbai attacks and its political arm. "We appeal on the government of Pakistan to lift the ban against Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) and Jamaat-ud-Dawa (JuD) because no Kashmiri jihadi organisation was involved in the Mumbai attacks," Syed Salahuddin, head of the militant Hizbul Mujahideen, told the gathering of around 1,000 people. Asked by an Indian journalist of his assessment of the danger posed by extremists coming into India from Pakistan, Obama said: "Obviously we are very concerned about extremists and terrorists who have made camp in the border regions of Pakistan as well as in Afghanistan. "But we spoke about it more broadly, in terms of how we can coordinate effectively on issues of counter-terrorism." Obama said that India and Pakistan had more mortal enemies than each other. "At a time when perhaps the greatest enemy of both India and Pakistan should be poverty... it may make sense to create a more effective dialogue between India and Pakistan," he said. The president also praised Singh's leadership, saying he was "a very wise and decent man, and has done a wonderful job in guiding India, even prior to being prime minister, along a path of extraordinary economic growth". Singh told a separate news conference that he and Obama had agreed to join forces to fight terrorism. "We both agreed that our two countries must work together to counter the forces of terror," he said, adding that they had a "global strategic partnership". "We both have agreed that there are enormous opportunities to further strengthen our relationship to make this partnership more productive, more durable and diverse," he said. Singh added, however, that the ball was in Pakistan's court over the deadly Mumbai terror attacks last November, pressing Islamabad to "convince us that it is sincere" about tracking down those responsible. Questioned about Pakistan's response to the bloodbath, he said: "We expect Pakistan to do all that is required to bring the culprits of the Mumbai terror attacks to book. "We have supplied Pakistan (with) answers to all the questions that there are. The ball is in the court of Pakistan. It has to convince us that it is sincere about bringing to book the culprits of Mumbai." A group of 10 heavily-armed extremists carried out a 60-hour assault on India's financial and entertainment hub, leaving 165 dead and more than 300 injured. Indian Army soldiers display seized arms and ammunition after a gunbattle, at an army base in Srinagar, India, Wednesday, March 25, 2009. The Pakistan-based rebel group Lashkar-e-Taiba blamed for last year's Mumbai attacks on Wednesday threatened more attacks in Indian Kashmir after a five-day gunbattle between government troops and suspected insurgents killed 25 combatants. The attacks soured a five-year peace process between the neighbours as New Delhi blamed the attacks on the Pakistan-based militant group Lashkar-e-Taiba and "official agencies" in Pakistan -- a reference to the country's spy service.
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