Mattis' India visit marks change in US strategy

This handout photograph released by India's Press Information Bureau (PIB) on September 26, 2017 shows US Defence Secretary Jim Mattis (L) speaking with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, in New Delhi. (AFP)

These are the headlines we are tracking for you in this episode of On the News Line:

Mattis's India visit marks change in US strategy

The visit to India by US Defense Secretary James Mattis could have been a significant step in the expansion of ties between Washington and New Delhi. 

Mattis’ visit technically focused on wider sales of American weaponry and the situation in Afghanistan.  But a warning to Pakistan that he indirectly announced during his press conference with his India peer caught may be worth a closer attention. Without naming Pakistan, the US top general said Washington has no stomach for countries that support terrorist groups. This was an echo of what President Donald Trump said against Pakistan in August. What appeared to have been a verbal offensive against Islamabad could have been meant to serve certain strategic targets that could be well beyond Pakistan. Mattis appears to have tried to cement Trump’s strategy to the same effect in his visit to New Delhi. 

KRG independence vote antagonized Kurds

The recent secession referendum in Iraq’s  semi-autonomous Kurdistan region has antagonized regional governments. The Kurds have soured relations with Iran, Turkey, Syria and the central government in Baghdad. The neighboring countries had warned Erbil against its dangerous secessionist plan. The vote has raised regional tensions and even the possibility of an armed conflict. Ankara said following the vote, that it does not rule out the possibility of military action. But not everyone in the Middle East is angered by the controversial referendum. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu expressed strong support for the planned secession. The vote has revealed the depth of discreet ties between Israel and the government of the Kurdistan region. Netanyahu’s public expression of support has raised concerns about Israel’s motives in backing the secessionist drive in a region that borders two of Israel’s sworn enemies, Iran and Syria.

Press TV’s website can also be accessed at the following alternate addresses:

Press TV News Roku