Advani lashes out at Pakistan over Lashkar
6 March 2001
The Hindustan Times
Port Blair: LASHING OUT at Pakistan for its "inadequate" response to India's peace initiative in Jammu and Kashmir, Union Home Minister L K Advani today accused it of continuing to aid and abet militant outfits like Lashkar-E-Toiba and Jaish-e-Mohammad. "Pakistan's response to this initiative has been inadequate," Advani told a press conference here when asked whether there had been positive signals from across the border to New Delhi's declaration of unilateral ceasefire in J and K which has now been extended till May end. "The only response Pakistan has given is to stop firing across the border. But it has not stopped aiding and abetting militant outfits like Lashkar-E-Toiba and Jaish-E-Mohammad based there," he said. Outlining government's three-pronged strategy to counter militancy in the country, he said this involved giving a boost to developmental activities whether in the north-east, Jammu and Kashmir or anywhere else to prevent the youth from being weaned away from the mainstream, and towards militancy. Without naming Pakistan, he said another segment of the strategy was to mobilise international opinion against "a country which has been aiding and abetting cross-border terrorism, which is a crime not only against humanity but also against the civilised society." The minister described as a "very serious matter" the demolition of Buddhist statues in Afghanistan by the ruling Taliban militia and said "no words can be too strong to condemn this attack." He said the entire world has been outraged by this "heinous crime".