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Pakistan to respond if India tests Agni III
April 08, 2003 15:46 IST
Pakistan has said it would take 'appropriate' steps if India test-fired Agni III long-range ballistic missile, while asserting that it has a right to launch a pre-emptive strike if India thinks the same way, Pakistan Information Minister Sheikh Rashid Ahmed said.
He was reacting to Defence Minister George Fernandes' remarks that India is developing and making all efforts to test fire the missile when the time comes.
"But it finds itself constrained to do something when an aggressive country makes futile attempts to intimidate us," Ahmed said. "If they want us to be intimidated by such acts they are totally mistaken. We know how to defend our motherland."
Referring to External Affairs Minister Yaswant Sinha's assertions that India has a better case for pre-emptive strike against Pakistan that the United States had against Iraq, Ahmed said Islamabad too has a similar right. "India is a fit case for pre-emptive strike," he said.
Foreign Minister Khurshid Muhammed Kasuri said Pakistan was 'not afraid' of India's missile programme and claimed that Islamabad's missile technology was 'more advanced and sophisticated' than that of New Delhi's.
Kasuri said Islamabad wanted to improve ties with New Delhi, but serious talks would be possible 'only after the completion of elections in various Indian states' as Indian leaders were indulged in rhetoric to appeal to their vote banks.
More reports from Pakistan
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