Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf accused India of "state terrorism" in the disputed region of Kashmir on Tuesday, blaming massive human rights abuses for the decade-long insurgency there.
Musharraf marked Kashmir Solidarity Day, a national holiday in Pakistan, with another appeal for talks with India to resolve the Kashmir dispute, which has twice brought the neighbours to war and lies behind the huge buildup of troops along their border.
"If the people of Kashmir have been forced to take up arms against Indian occupation forces during the past decade or so, it is India which is to be blamed for this," Musharraf said.
"No self-respecting people can be expected to remain unmoved while their families and friends are being killed, tortured and gang-raped, their houses burnt down...and humiliation of the worst kind heaped upon them through the instrument of state terrorism," he said in a statement.
Since partition of British India in 1947, when the Hindu ruler of Muslim-majority Kashmir decided to join mainly Hindu India rather than Islamic Pakistan, Kashmir has fuelled a lethal rivalry between the two countries.
Kashmir Solidarity Day has been marked with banners in the Pakistani capital Islamabad decrying "Indian Inhumanity in Kashmir" and with gory pictures on state television showing civilians purportedly murdered by the Indian army in Kashmir.
Tensions between nuclear-capable Pakistan and India have surged in the wake of a bloody attack on India's parliament on December 13 which New Delhi blamed on Pakistan-based militant groups fighting is rule in Kashmir.
(China Daily Februray 5, 2002)