Indian defense minister calls for end to bioweapons, wars

India's Defense Minister and President of the Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses Shri AK Antony, in a keynote address to the 12th Asian Security Conference 2010, called for an end of war to settle disputes, the destruction of biological, chemical and nuclear weapons and a call to fight terrorism.

"The tools of war are getting sophisticated, yet deadlier and devastating," Antony said. "This should discourage democratic nations from choosing war to settle disputes. Though all-out wars between nations may not be the norm any longer, they have been replaced by terrorism, insurgencies and various forms of militancy. Such low-key conflicts and proxy wars are used as instruments by other nations to challenge the State structures."

Antony called traditional terrorism a real threat, noting that Indian neighbors Pakistan and Afghanistan are home to terrorist organizations that pose a threat to the entire world.

"The people of Pakistan and Afghanistan too are the victims of these organizations," Antony said. "Unless the real support base of these organizations is tracked down and dismantled, their activities will continue to pose a serious threat."

Antony also reiterated India's commitment to the elimination of its nuclear weapons and its steadfast support to ban weapons of mass destruction by taking part in the Chemical Weapons Convention and the Biological and Toxins Weapons Convention.

"In keeping with our obligations under the CWC, last year, we completed the process of destruction of our chemical weapons," Antony said.