Monday, January 7, 2002, Chandigarh, India 


M A I N   N E W S

UK, India declare war on terrorism
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, January 6
In a strong message to Pakistan, India and Britain today agreed to jointly fight global terrorism stressing that the perpetrators of the recent terrorist attacks on the USA and the Parliament House be brought to justice and must not be permitted to endanger innocent lives in the future.

The New Delhi Declaration, signed by Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee and British Prime Minister Tony Blair, has given expression to the two countries’ determination to step up cooperation to fight terrorism.

The four-page declaration, which outlines partnership between the two countries for a better and safer world, also condemned all those who supported terrorism.

“Terrorism is an attack on the human rights and civil liberties of the citizens of the world. We condemn all acts of terrorism whatever the motivation”, the declaration said in a clear message to Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf who has been describing terrorist operating in Jammu and Kashmir as “freedom fighters”.

Earlier, Mr Blair made a strong plea for averting a conflict and resumption of dialogue between India and Pakistan for resolving all outstanding issues, including Kashmir, and avoid a war.

“International community wants that in the given circumstances, political process should take the place of violence, terrorism and extremism” Mr Blair said after 75 minutes’ talk with Mr Vajpayee.

The two Prime Ministers condemned “all those who support terrorism and finance terrorist activities”.

“We reject arguments of those who attempt to justify terrorism, which in all its forms must be condemned unambiguously and eradicated wherever it exists” Mr Blair said at a joint press conference with Mr Vajpayee.

The terrorist attacks on September 11 in the USA and October 1 and December 13 in India were deliberate attempts to shatter peace of our people and to undermine the democratic values”, the visiting Prime Minister said.

It was important to avoid conflicts of any kind, Mr Blair said adding that there were two parts to resolving a problem.

One was that terrorism in any form, whether it was the December 13 attack on the Parliament House or October 1 attack, was condemnable. The other part was that everything should be done peacefully through a democratic and meaningful dialogue which should replace violence, the British Prime Minister said.

The declaration is aimed at giving economic depth and dimension to the bilateral ties.

Mr Vajpayee hosted a dinner in the honour of Mr Blair at Hyderabad House.

Earlier, Mr Blair accompanied by his wife Cherie, arrived this afternoon on a two-day visit to the Capital from Hyderabad.

Minister of State for External Affairs Omar Abdullah received them at the airport.

Soon after, External Affairs Minister Jaswant Singh called on the visiting premier at the hotel where Mr Blair is staying.

Tomorrow, Mr Blair would lay a wreath at Rajghat and later call on President K.R. Narayanan and Mrs Usha Narayanan.

Earlier, the visiting Prime Minister will inaugurate a science festival.

The British Prime Minister will leave for Islamabad around afternoon.Back

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