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December 31, 1999
Hold Pak responsible, says Pallone
Member of US House of Representatives Frank Pallone, known for his strong anti-terrorism views, has pointedly held Pakistan responsible for the hijacking of the Indian Airlines flight IC-814 and stressed the need for the United States to increase cooperation with India on counter-terrorism efforts.
''I hope this incident will alert the world to the threat India faces from this terrorist movement. I believe that Pakistan must be held accountable for contributing to this violence and instability. There should be more pressure brought to bear on Pakistan to be part of the solution, instead of continuing to exacerbate this problem,'' he said on Thursday.
The senior House member, who has been one of Congress's most outspoken voices on the dangers of the armed separatist movement in Jammu and Kashmir said, ''India and the United States have both been particularly targetted by Osama bin-Laden and the loose network of militant forces who share his goals.'' He said this incident clearly indicated the need for enhanced cooperation between the US and India in identifying the shared threats and finding ways of protecting their citizens.
Pallone said the current hijacking is linked to the orgy of violence and terror being waged by the militant movement against military and civilian targets to end Indian rule in Kashmir.
The Congressman prayed for the welfare of the hostages and appealed to the hijackers to free them. He also urged the Taleban authorities to intervene in a meaningful way to end the crisis peacefully.
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