'Keep faith in democratic values'

'Keep faith in democratic values'

The US Secretary of State John Kerry on Wednesday said that India and America must uphold shared democratic values and people should feel free to protest peacefully.

“The US and India will have to keep faith in our democratic values and uphold the freedom that defines our countries,” Kerry said, while delivering a speech at the Indian Institute of Technology in New Delhi. “We have to respect the rights of all our citizens irrespective of creed and allow them to protest in peace without the fear of reprisal or retribution, without fear of being jailed,” he added.

His comment came just about a week after the deputy spokesperson of the US State Department spoke in support of the Amnesty International in the wake of the move by Bengaluru Police to slap sedition charges against the global human rights organisation.

“We have to build bridges of tolerance and acceptance, compassion, mutual understanding among every religion and sect,” he said, observing that a society, which does not give equal opportunities to its citizens, makes them potential extremists or terrorists.

Speaking on the India-US counterterrorism cooperation, Kerry said that no one nation could alone counter and defeat the extremists. “It (fight against terror) is a global cause requiring consistent focus and persistent action and the willingness to adapt our tactics as the threats evolve,” said the US Secretary of State.


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