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December 28, 1999
PM discusses crisis with defence chiefs
By A Correspondent
As part of the government's efforts to resolve the hijack of Flight 814, Prime Minister A B Vajpayee this morning met with the three defence chiefs.
This is the first time since the four-day old crisis that Gen V P Malik, Adm Sushil Kumar and Air Marshall Tipnis have been formally consulted by the government. While there was no official comment about what transpired in the meeting, observers believe that it could have been called to plumb the defence chiefs' mind about the possibility, and consequences, of a concerted strike against the hijackers who have been holding the Indian Airlines aircraft in Kandahar, Afghanistan.
Increasingly, it is believed, that a military solution to the crisis is likely, since the hijackers have so far seemed unamenable to the discussions the government's negotiators have been holding with them.
Strengthening this theory is hard talk emanating from Taliban sources cautioning the hijackers against use of force against the passengers on board the flight.
CRISIS ON FLIGHT 814
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