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India rejects charge that it is belligerent

India rejects charge that it is belligerent

Publication: The Daily Excelsior
Date: May 22, 2002

India today rejected the charge that it was in a war-like mood or belligerent towards Pakistan in the wake of the Kaluchak massacre but made it clear that it would do everything to protect national interests.

"I totally reject the charge that it is we who are war-like or belligerent... There is no substance in this allegation. We are only engaged in defence of our national interests and preventing cross-border terrorism," an External Affairs Ministry spokesperson told reporters here.

Asked if India and Pakistan are on the verge of a war given the deployment of forces by India on the border, the spokesperson told the questioner "it is a very one-sided (view)...As if Pakistan is a peace-loving nation. I am sorry we haven't got the picture right there."

On whether there was any pressure from the United States on India to exercise restraint, she said "We are not into the business of pressure when it comes to protecting our national interests."

Observing that nobody wanted a conflict, she said ''in the ultimate analysis, we are for peace and against war but we are confronting a situation generated by actions from across the border. We are taking steps to defend ourselves and want to convey it to Pakistan that India will not tolerate further pain inflicted on us.''

The spokesperson said India was preparing ground for further diplomatic initiatives to explain to the world community New Delhi's security concerns as also the situation arising from Pakistan's continued support to terrorism, directed against this country.

"We are in the process of determining the nature of our diplomatic initiatives," he added.

Pakistan had failed to address "reasonable expectations" from India to stop cross-border terrorism and infiltration in order to create a conducive atmosphere for normalisation of relations between the two countries, she added.

Replying to a question, the spokesperson said India did not differentiate between terrorist violence anywhere, be it Karachi or Jammu.

"The attack in Karachi earlier this month, in which some French nationals were killed, was a terrorist attack...It was a heinous crime like the Kaluchak incident. We don't differentiate between terrorist acts like Pakistan does," she added.(UNI)

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