Sunday, September 15, 2002, Chandigarh, India


M A I N   N E W S

Pervez ‘can’t abandon’ Kashmir
Fears he may be thrown out of power

New York, September 14
Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf says that he would be thrown out of power if he abandons the Kashmir issue.

“No leader, no government of Pakistan can leave or abandon from the issue of Kashmir. Any effort to sideline this issue will not work because the people are involved in it,” he said in an address to the Asia Society here yesterday.

Elaborating further on the pitfalls for a Pakistani leader to abandon the Kashmir issue, General Musharraf went on to say, “It is not possible. Nobody can do it. He’ll be eliminated. He’ll be out of government. He’ll be defeated. His government will be defeated,”

General Musharraf said it was also time that India dropped its opposition to outside mediation on the Kashmir question.

“We have been trying for all these years through a bilateral approach to move forward on Kashmir, and where has it ended?” the President questioned.

“If bilateralism is not producing results, then certainly mediation or third party involvement is the answer,” he said.

At another function held in his honour here, General Musharraf, while making a reference to an article in an Indian magazine talking of how India could be proud of “one achievement”, he said, “India should be ashamed of a thousand other things.”

At the Asia Society function, General Musharraf said the Kashmir dispute was undermining peace in the region.

The “Kashmir issue has to be solved. I am certainly not a rigid person. We have come a long way and we need to solve this problem with a flexible approach,” General Musharraf said.

“There are three parties involved in it and there is solution of the problem, but the leadership of both the countries (India and Pakistan) should be bold,” he said.

On Indo-Pak military stand-off on the border, General Musharraf said “The situation is still dangerous.” PTI

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