Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Australia happy with India security

Australia on Tuesday said it was satisfied with Indian security arrangements for the ongoing World Cup hockey tournament and the Commonwealth Games scheduled to be held in New Delhi in October.

Australian Foreign Minister Stephen Smith kicked off his three-day trip to India with an inspection of the main stadium for the October 3-14 Commonwealth event which has been dogged by concern over possible militant attacks.

Australia is very pleased with the cooperation and coordination about security in the run-up to the Commonwealth Games, the foreign minister told reporters.

Of course, we have been very pleased with security arrangements both for the hockey World Cup and also recently for the Commonwealth Federation shooting competition, Smith added.

Host India has deployed thousands of security personnel for the 12-nation two-week hockey tournament which began Sunday in New Delhi.

Concern was fuelled by a bomb blast last month in the western city of Pune that killed 15 people and an alleged warning by an Islamist group to athletes competing in India.

Smith said he would meet his Indian counterpart SM Krishna and other officials to get up-to-date information on security for the Commonwealth Games, India's biggest multi-sports event since 1982.

Smith also addressed recent tensions caused by a series of attacks on Indians in Australia, dubbed curry bashings, that have led to strains between New Delhi and Canberra.

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