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Kashmir: Obama warns Pakistan
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July 28, 2008 19:31 IST

In some blunt talking on Pakistan's role in fomenting terrorism in Kashmir, Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama [Images] has said the US should confront Islamabad on its funding of "mujahideen" groups in the valley and the terror camps running under its nose.

Ahead of his meeting with visiting Pakistan Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani, Obama said "historically Pakistan has tolerated or in some cases funded the Mujahideen [Images]" because they think it's somehow helpful to them in Kashmir which continues to be a "constant instigator" of tension between Islamabad and New Delhi [Images].

"We have to have an honest conversation about how counterproductive that is," Obama said in an interview published in the Wall Street Journal.

Asked whether US should play a role in negotiations been Pakistan and India, he said, "use that as an example of how we need to think comprehensively about the region.

"If one of the central concerns of Pakistan is its security posture towards India, then we need to put that on the table for discussion as we try to solve the problems in Afghanistan".

Asked about the scheduled meeting between Gilani and President George Bush [Images] in Washington, Obama said the US must emphasise the importance of closing down terrorist camps.

"It's not just in the interest of Afghan security, or US security, it is in the interest of Pakistani security that we shut down those bases down," he said.

"I know that the new premier is coming to Washington. I'll be very interested hearing what he has to say. Obviously, they're a new government. There just getting their sea legs. But I think it's very important that we emphasise to them how serious we take these base camps," he said.





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