News

DATE=6/2/99 TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT NUMBER=2-250115 TITLE=INDIA / PAK / KASHMIR (L) BYLINE=JIM TEEPLE DATELINE=NEW DELHI CONTENT= VOICED AT: INTRO: INDIA SAYS IT IS CONSIDERING ALLOWING WHAT IT DESCRIBES AS INFILTRATORS FROM PAKISTAN SAFE PASSAGE BACK TO PAKISTAN IF THEY QUIT FIGHTING. THE ANNOUNCEMENT CAME WEDNESDAY, AS INDIAN FIGHTER JETS BEGAN A SECOND WEEK OF AIRSTRIKES AGAINST THE INFILTRATORS. MEANWHILE ARTILLERY DUELS BETWEEN INDIAN AND PAKISTANI TROOPS CONTINUED FOR A SECOND DAY ALONG THE KASHMIR BORDER. (OPT) PAKISTAN SAYS THREE SCHOOLCHILDREN WERE KILLED BY INDIAN FIRE ON WEDNESDAY, ADDING TO SEVEN KILLED IN A SIMILAR INCIDENT ON TUESDAY. AS A RESULT, PAKISTAN SAYS IT IS CLOSING SCHOOLS CLOSE TO THE KASHMIR BORDER. (END OPT) VOA'S JIM TEEPLE REPORTS FROM NEW DELHI, INDIAN COMMANDERS DENY THE CLAIMS AND SAY THEIR GROUND TROOPS HAVE RETAKEN ALMOST HALF THE TERRITORY SEIZED BY THE INFILTRATORS. TEXT: SPEAKING AT THE LAUNCHING OF INDIA'S NEWEST BATTLESHIP IN BOMBAY, INDIAN PRIME MINISTER ATAL BEHARI VAJPAYEE SAYS THE GUERRILLA INFILTRATORS WHO ENTERED KASHMIR FROM PAKISTAN COULD BE GIVEN SAFE PASSAGE BACK TO PAKISTAN IF THEY AGREE TO QUIT FIGHTING. RAMINDER JASSAL, INDIA FOREIGN MINISTRY SPOKESMAN, SAYS IF THE INFILTRATORS ACCEPT SAFE PASSAGE BACK TO PAKISTAN THE CONFLICT COULD END QUICKLY. // INSERT JASSAL ACTUALITY // SAFE PASSAGE IS MOVMENT BACKWARD BEFORE THEY ARE ELIMINATED. IF THEY WERE TO MOVE BACKWARD WHICH WOULD BE PRUDENT FOR THEM, IT WOULD END THE CAUSE OF THE CONFLICT ITSELF. ,// END ACTUALITY // // OPT // ONE KASHMIRI MILITANT LEADER INVOLVED IN THE INFILTRATION REJECTED INDIA'S OFFER ON WEDNESDAY, SAYING HIS FORCES PLAN TO MOVE FORWARD NOT BACKWARD. FAZALUR REHMAN KHALIL, WHO HEADS THE ISLAMIST HARAKATUL MUJAHADEEN MOVEMENT, SAYS HIS FORCES ALSO CALLED THE INDIAN AIR STRIKES INEFFECTIVE. INDIAN OFFICIALS ON WEDNESDAY ISSUED A SERIES OF CONCILIATORY STATEMENTS. FOREIGN MINISTER JASWANT SINGH CALLED THE FIGHTING IN KASHMIR AN ABERRATION THAT SHOULD NOT DESTROY THE GAINS OF PEACE TALKS HELD IN FEBRUARY WHEN PRIME MINISTER VAJPAYEE TRAVELED TO PAKISTAN ON A BUS TO HOLD TALKS WITH HIS COUNTERPART NAWAZ SHARIF. // END OPT // PRIME MINISTER VAJPAYEE CONFIRMED WEDNESDAY THAT MR. SINGH WILL HOLD TALKS LATER THIS WEEK WITH PAKISTAN'S FOREIGN MINISTER SARTAJ AZIZ -- ALTHOUGH NO DATE HAS YET BEEN SET. RAMINDER JASSAL OF INDIA'S FOREIGN MINISTRY SAYS THE TALKS WILL BE FOCUSED ON HOW TO GET THE INFILTRATORS OUT OF INDIAN TERRITORY. // INSERT 2ND JASSAL ACTUALITY // A LINE OF CONTROL THAT HAS BEEN DELINEATED BY BOTH SIDES AND WHICH FLOWS FROM AN AGREEMENT REACHED BY BOTH COUNTRIES OUGHT TO HAVE BEEN RESPECTED BY THE OTHER SIDE. THEY HAVE NOT RESPECTED THAT. THE INTRUSION HAS TAKEN PLACE ACROSS THE DELINEATED LINE OF CONTROL AND THAT IS WHAT IS BEING PUSHED BACKWARD (BY US). SO THE POINT TO BE PUT ACROSS IN THE TALKS IS HOW IS THIS TO BE DONE -- EITHER IT WILL BE DONE VOLUNTARILLY BY THOSE WHO HAVE INTRUDED OR THEY WILL BE EVICTED BY MILITARY MEANS. // END ACTUALITY // MR. JASSAL SAYS THERE IS NO QUESTION OF STOPPING EITHER AIR STRIKES OR GROUND ATTTACKS UNTIL THE INFILTRATORS ARE PUSHED BACK ACROSS THE SO-CALLED "LINE OF CONTROL" THAT DIVIDES KASHMIR. MEANWHILE, INDIAN ARMY COMMANDERS SAY THEY HAVE RETAKEN NEARLY HALF THE TERRITORY SEIZED BY THE INFILTRATORS. COMMANDERS CONTINUE TO INISIST THERE ARE REGULAR PAKISTANI ARMY TROOPS AMONG THE INFILTRATORS, ALTHOUGH THEY HAVE YET TO OFFER DOCUMENTARY PROOF BACKING UP THEIR CLAIMS. INDIAN COMMANDERS SAY THERE IS FIERCE FIGHTING GOING ON IN KASHMIR BUT THEY ARE METHODICALLY ENCIRCLING THE INFILTRATORS WHO ARE DUG IN ON HIGH GROUND. (SIGNED) NEB/JLT/KL 02-Jun-99 9:57 AM EDT (1357 UTC) NNNN Source: Voice of America .