India urges Sri Lanka not to shop for arms in China, Pakistan

CHENNAI, India, June 1, 2007 (AFP) – India is urging Sri Lanka not to buy weapons from China and Pakistan to fight Tamil rebels, New Delhi’s national security advisor said. “We are the big power in the region. It is very clear,” M. K. Narayanan told reporters Thursday evening.

“Whatever their requirements, they (Sri Lanka) should come to us. We will give what is necessary,” he said after meeting Tamil Nadu state chief minister M. Karunanidhi.

At the same time, Narayanan insisted that India would not provide any “offensive” weaponry to Sri Lanka, where fighting has escalated between government forces and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam.

The comments followed reports that Sri Lanka had told India it would have to approach China and Pakistan for arms, if India was unable to supply them.

Sri Lanka blames its inability to track down low-flying Tamil Tiger aircraft on a “faulty” radar supplied by India. Sri Lankan officials have also said that New Delhi objected to Colombo trying to secure a better radar from China.

However, both China and Pakistan are key suppliers of small arms to Sri Lankan security forces.

Islamabad supplied multi-barrel ro