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Kashmir militancy still looms: PM

April 20, 2005 18:08 IST

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has said the threat to the peace process from extremist forces and terrorist organisations has not been eliminated and he looked forward to Pakistan implementing its assurances in letter and spirit.

Making a statement in Parliament on the visit of Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf on Wednesday, he said, amidst thumping of desks by members, "While I am satisfied with the progress achieved in our talks during the visit we should remain conscious of the difficulties ahead".

Delhi 2005: Musharraf's visit

The difficult issues that divide the two countries have bedeviled relations for far too long to hope for an immediate resolution, he said.

"The threat to the peace process from extremist forces and terrorist organisations has not been eliminated. There I mentioned to President Musharraf that the whole process of serious and sustained dialogue hinges on building an atmosphere of trust and confidence, free from violence and terror. We look forward to Pakistan implementing their assurances in letter and spirit," Singh said.

Referring to the visit of Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao, he said a major outcome was the Agreement on the Political Parameters and Guiding Principles for the Settlement of the India-China Boundary Question and the desire to proactively resolve outstanding differences.

Referring to the joint statement issued on Monday at the end of Musharraf's visit, the Prime Minister said the reaffirmation of the commitments made in the joint statements of Islamabad and New York last year addressed "our concerns relating to terorrism from across the border."

The statement contained a pledge that terrorism would not be allowed to impede the peace process. It also underlined the importance of the peace process and the degree of improvement in relations between the two countries, he said.

He said the Jammu and Kashmir issue was discussed with Musharraf in a "positive" atmosphere and emphasised that "while redrawing of boundaries was not possible, all measures that could bring peoples of both sides together, including increased transportation linkages to facilitate greater traffic of people and trade across the border and the LoC, would help the process and create an atmosphere of mutual trust and confidence".

Both of us agreed to continue the discussions in a "sincere, purposeful and forward-looking" manner, he said.

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Indo-Pak Peace Talks: The Complete Coverage


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