November 22, 2002

Pakistan Speaks to Defuse Tension

Pakistan's President Pervez Musharraf addresses the nation on Monday, raising hopes for a landmark speech that will help defuse tension and avert war with nuclear rival India.

Pakistan conducted its second missile test in two days on Sunday. India said it was running out of patience over attacks by Islamic militants whom it accuses Islamabad of supporting.

But the nuclear-armed rivals, under intense international pressure to avert war over Kashmir, appeared to leave the door open for further attempts to defuse their military stand-off.

A government spokesman in Islamabad said Musharraf would address. Indian Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee said India would wait to see whether international efforts to persuade Pakistan to crack down on Islamic militants bore fruit.

"War is not going to serve anyone," U.S. National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice said, speaking on 'Fox News Sunday' from Russia.

"There are very intensive and coordinated efforts right now between the United States, Great Britain, the European Union and, indeed, the Russians to try and calm this crisis," she said.

President Bush, who arrived in Paris on Sunday from Russia, and French President Jacques Chirac joined in urging Pakistan to halt incursions by militants across the Line of Control dividing disputed Kashmir.

Analysts see a small window of opportunity, perhaps lasting two weeks, perhaps two months, to prevent war between the two countries, which have mobilized a million men on their border.

(China Daily May 27, 2002)

In This Series
Pakistan Tests Second Missile, India Boosts Defense

Pakistan Test Fires Nuclear-Capable Missile



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