Chief of Defence Staff Bipin Rawat said on Thursday that the only way to end terrorism is to do what the United States did after the attacks of September 11, 2001, NDTV reported. The United States invaded Afghanistan and deposed the Taliban from power, and began a hunt for Osama bin Laden, the mastermind of the terror attack, that ended with his killing by US special forces in 2011 in Abbottabad, Pakistan.

In an oblique reference to Pakistan, Rawat said that terrorism will continue as long as there are countries which sponsor it. “As long as there are states which sponsor terrorism, we will have to live with the menace,” he said at an event in Delhi, according to PTI. “We need to take the bull by its horns and strike at the root cause. If we think the war on terrorism is going to end, we are wrong.”

Rawat said countries which sponsor terrorists cannot be partners in the global war on terrorism. He said there has to be diplomatic isolation of those sponsoring terrorism.

The chief of defence staff said radicalisation can be checked if the “right persons” are targeted. Asked whether he supports peace talks with the Taliban, Rawat said talks should be initiated with everybody provided they give up the “weapon of terrorism”.

Rawat became the first chief of defence staff on December 31, a position newly created by the government. Prior to that, he was the chief of army staff. General MM Naravane took over the position of Army chief on December 31.