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June 20, 1999
Vajpayee rules out further talks with Pakistan on Kargil
While making it clear that it has no intention of trying to mediate between India and Pakistan, Bangladesh today asked both countries to resolve the Kargil issue through dialogue. But Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee rejected any suggestion for further talks with his Pakistani counterpart, Nawaz Sharief, on the subject.
"Bangladesh wants peace, which is in the interest of the economic prosperity of South Asia. On the Kargil issue, I hope both countries will sit together and through dialogue resolve their problems," Premier Sheikh Hasina Wajed said at a joint press conference with Vajpayee at the end of his two-day visit to Dhaka.
Sheikh Hasina said no problem could be solved through arms. "We want a solution to problems through dialogue."
But she avoided giving a direct reply when asked if the Pakistani intrusion in Kargil could be termed an aggression.
She also clarified that Bangladesh has no intention of mediating between New Delhi and Islamabad. Her statement assumes significance since Bangladeshi Foreign Secretary Shafi Sami had recently said his country could mediate between India and Pakistan if they so desired.
Vajpayee also made it clear that the Jammu and Kashmir issue is a bilateral one leaving no room for third-party mediation.
Asked if India's decision to send emissaries to different parts of the world to garner support on Kargil did not amount to seeking mediation, he said, "We will continue to do that to explain what has happened in that part of Jammu and Kashmir. These are diplomatic efforts and cannot be termed requests for mediation."
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