April 2003 News

Pakistan vows to check J&K violence, if India talks

24 April 2003
The Hindustan Times
Press Trust of India

New Delhi: Pakistan on Thursday said India need not have any apprehension of increased violence with the melting of snow in Kashmir and that it would not insist on third party mediation, if New Delhi begins talks with Islamabad at the earliest. 'If India feels that cross-border terrorism would increase when the snow melts in Kashmir, there is all the more reason to talk with Pakistan. If we talk and talk soon, this feared increase in violence won't take place,' Pakistan's Foreign Minister Khurshid Mehmood Kasuri told BBC.Com in an exclusive interview, according to a release from the BBC World Service. Assuring that his country will not press on international mediation to resolve the Kashmir issue, he said, 'India keeps saying it is a bilateral issue but does not want to talk to us. If they can ensure sustained and serious dialogue, we won't press on third party mediation.' Lauding the recent offer of friendship made by Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee, Kasuri said, 'We have heard a lot of belligerent statements from Indian ministers in recent days. However, the Indian Prime Minister has shown statesman like qualities in talking about peace,' the release quoted him as having said.


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