December 2003 News

Musharraf Fields Posers, Remains Rigid On Kashmir

30 December 2003
The Times of India

Islamabad: Dispelling the impression that he was ready for a 'sell-out' on Kashmir , Pakistan 's President Pervez Musharraf has asserted that the issue was in the limelight now and it needed to be aired. Stating this during a function at All Pakistan Newspapers Society on Monday night, Musharraf dismissed reports that there was international pressure on Pakistan to roll back its nuclear and missile programme and its stance on Kashmir. 'There is no pressure whatsoever on me to roll back the nuclear and missile programme. We are not rolling back, there is no question, these are our national interests and only a traitor will think of rolling back,' he said. Musharraf hoped the Saarc summit, beginning on January 4, would result in a forward movement towards the resolution of all outstanding issues with India , including Kashmir . He said conversion of the Line of Control into an international border could not be a solution to the Kashmir issue. At the same time, he added, Islamabad was ready for a peace initiative. Musharraf also denied any split in the Army ranks over his leadership, saying all corps commanders were with him. Referring to the questioning of the country's top nuclear scientists on the alleged leakage of nuclear technology to Libya , Iran and North Korea , Musharraf said such action was taken because Pakistan was firmly committed to nuclear non-proliferation.


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