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LoC cannot be border: Musharraf

January 26, 2004 16:19 IST

Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf has made it clear that the idea of turning the Line of Control into an international border is unacceptable.

"We have fought wars over this Line of Control. So a dispute cannot be a solution. Certainly not," he told the BBC in an interview.

A solution somewhere midway, acceptable to India, Pakistan and Kashmir, could work, he told BBC in an interview.

"I have been talking of a four-step solution," he said. "That we start talking first of all, accept the reality of Kashmir; secondly and then eliminate whatever is unacceptable to India, Pakistan and Kashmir; and then out of the balance go for a solution acceptable," he said.

The environment in India and Pakistan is conducive to a solution to the Kashmir issue, he said. "The public [in India], the vast majority want peace and harmony with Pakistan and they want a solution of all disputes. I think we have to be bold and go forward."

Musharraf blamed individual scientists and the world black market for nuclear proliferation and pledged "harsh" punishment for the Pakistani scientists who sold secrets to Iran and other countries.

"We will punish them, and we will be very harsh with them because they are enemies of state and they have done something for personal and financial gain," he said.

He said "some unscrupulous individuals", who acted without the knowledge of the government, might have sold nuclear secrets to other countries.

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