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Pakistan's response poor, India to US

By Tara Shankar Sahay in New Delhi
May 11, 2003 03:14 IST
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India has told US Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage that Pakistan's response on ending cross-border terrorism is inadequate, Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson Navtej Sarna said on Saturday.

He said this was conveyed to the American dignitary when he met

Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee, Deputy Prime Minister Lal Kishenchand Advani, External Affairs Minister Yashwant Sinha and Foreign Secretary Kanwal Sibal.

"We received assurances before [from Pakistan], but they have not been translated into reality," Sarna said.

"When reality happens on the ground, it will show for itself.

"I think terrorism is a very vicious reality whose presence or absence speaks for itself. Once you know that there is no infiltration, once launching pads have been removed, once training camps have gone and communication system shot down, then you know it is credible movement.

"It was also conveyed that the prime minister's peace initiative towards Pakistan was designed to create easier conditions for Pakistan to respond to us favourably on the issue of cross- border terrorism.

"It was not meant to substitute our requirement that cross-border terrorism should end and the infrastructure of terrorism should be dismantled so that dialogue can take place."

He said there was 'complete congruence' between India and the US on the need to deal with terrorist organisations like the Lashkar-e-Tayiba and the Jaish-e-Mohammed and Armitage had raised the issue in Islamabad.

'The need to move forward on economic cooperation and the inadequacy of the response so far received also came up for discussion', in Saturday's meetings.

Asked whether the US dignitary was carrying any message from Islamabad, the spokesman said, "Armitage is not a messenger.

"There is no place for mediation, no intention for mediating."

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Tara Shankar Sahay in New Delhi