India on Thursday warned of “devastating consequences” if the U.S. and Pakistan failed to heal their rift that emerged after a guerrilla group directed day-long fire at the American Embassy in Kabul on September 13.

External Affairs Minister S.M. Krishna said at a joint media conference here with his French counterpart Alain Juppe:

“This concerns the relationship between two friendly powers — the U.S. and Pakistan — and it is India's desire that all outstanding issues between the two countries should be settled across the table and thereby, create a situation in the region which will be conducive for the development.

“Because, anything which upsets the region will have devastating consequences on the developmental agenda of other countries and more particularly, India. So, we sincerely hope that they will be able to solve their differences.” Mr. Juppe also expressed concern about the situation in Pakistan. “We are aware of the difficulties faced by this country at political, economic and security levels. We think it is absolutely necessary to develop a dialogue with Pakistan because this country has a positive role to play in finding solution to Afghanistan,” he said, adding France was in touch with the U.S. in this regard.

France has floated the idea of a collective security mechanism replacing the current collective military effort by the West that has been unable to restore peace and security after a decade of exertion and is poised to withdraw the bulk of its forces by the end of 2014.

In this respect, India and France voiced their support for next month's international conference in Istanbul and in a joint statement “welcomed the commitment of the region to work for a stable, peaceful, democratic and independent Afghanistan, achieved through an Afghan-led and Afghan-owned process.”

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