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Indo-Pak talks possible if J&K polls are peaceful: US

Indo-Pak talks possible if J&K polls are peaceful: US

Author: PTI
Publication: The Newspaper Today
Date: September 1, 2002

The United States has said a bilateral dialogue between India and Pakistan will be possible only if Assembly elections in Jammu and Kashmir are allowed to be peaceful.

US Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage in an interview to PBS television on Friday said, "Incidents of violence are on the upswing" in Kashmir and hoped that a peaceful Assembly elections in Jammu and Kashmir would resume Indo-Pak dialogue.

"The cross-border incursions are up from the end of June," he said in reply to a question whether infiltration into India had increased recently.

Asked if Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf was doing everything possible to stop terrorism in Kashmir, Armitage said, "Only President Musharraf and his colleagues know for sure, but we think that he is exerting some efforts."

On the issue of Pakistani support to terror attack in India, the American diplomat said, "...I don't want to get into what we know and and what we don't know.... However, there are jehadists that are outside the control of the Pakistani authority. There are also jehadists that were already existent in Kashmir. They don't need to cross the line of control to cause trouble."

"They (India) have said that if the elections could proceed free of violence from Pakistan, then they would entertain a dialogue. President Musharraf, for his part, told me that his government's position would be to condemn violence during any electoral season," Armitage said.

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