News

DATE=6/8/99 TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT NUMBER=2-250353 TITLE=INDIA / PAK / KASHMIR (L) BYLINE=JIM TEEPLE DATELINE=NEW DELHI CONTENT= VOICED AT: INTRO: INDIA SAYS IT ACCEPTS PAKISTAN'S OFFER FOR TALKS ON THE KASHMIR CRISIS. INDIA'S FOREIGN MINISTRY ON TUESDAY SAYS IT HAS ACCEPTED A FORMAL PROPOSAL FROM PAKISTAN FOR TALKS BUT THE TALKS WILL BE CONFINED TO GETTING WHAT INDIA DESCRIBES AS "PAKISTANI-BACKED ARMED INTRUDERS" OUT OF INDIAN TERRITORY IN KASHMIR. VOA'S JIM TEEPLE REPORTS FROM OUR NEW DELHI BUREAU WHILE INDIA SAYS IT WILL TALK TO PAKISTAN IT ALSO SAYS IT WILL CONTINUE WITH ITS MILITARY CAMPAIGN IN KASHMIR. TEXT: INDIA SAYS IT WILL WELCOME PAKISTAN'S FOREIGN MINISTER SARTAJ AZIZ THIS SATURDAY FOR TALKS WITH INDIA'S FOREIGN MINISTER JASWANT SINGH IN NEW DELHI. THE TALKS ARE EXPECTED TO LAST ONE DAY AND RAMINDER JASSAL, THE CHIEF SPOKESMAN FOR INDIA'S FOREIGN MINISTRY SAYS THERE WILL BE NO PRECONDITIONS. AT THE SAME TIME MR. JASSAL SAYS PAKISTAN SHOULD BE AWARE THAT THE TALKS WILL BE CONFINED TO GETTING, WHAT INDIA CALLS "ARMED INFILTRATORS," OUT OF ITS TERRITORY. // INSERT JASSAL ACTUALITY // THERE ARE NO PRECONDITIONS, BUT WE HAVE MADE IT VERY CLEAR IN OUR STATEMENTS THAT THIS VISIT IS TAKING PLACE AGAINST THE BACKDROP OF THE INCURSION IN THE KARGIL SECTOR OF THE STATE OF JAMMU AND KASHMIR AND IT IS IN THIS CONTEXT THAT WE SEE THE VISIT. // END ACTUALITY // PAKISTAN DENIES THAT IT BACKS THE INFILTRATORS OR THAT ITS TROOPS ARE FIGHTING ALONGSIDE THEM -- AS INDIA CLAIMS. SPEAKING TO THE NATION LATE MONDAY NIGHT, INDIA'S PRIME MINISTER ATAL BEHARI VAJPAYEE ACCUSED PAKISTAN OF USING FORCE TO UNILATERALLY ALTER THE "LINE OF CONTROL," THE CEASEFIRE LINE WHICH DIVIDES KASHMIR. MR. VAJPAYEE SAYS THE CURRENT CONFLICT IS DANGEROUS FOR BOTH COUNTRIES AND PAKISTAN SHOULD UNDERSTAND INDIA'S RESOLVE WHEN IT COMES TO EVICTING THE "INFILTRATORS," FROM INDIAN TERRITORY. // INSERT VAJPAYEE ACTUALITY // IT IS A SERIOUS SITUATION. IT IS A SITUATION THAT IS FRAUGHT WITH DANGER. IT IS A SITUATION THAT HAS ARISEN FROM ONE SIMPLE FACT -- THE DECISION OF PAKISTAN TO CROSS THE LINE OF CONTROL, TO SEND ITS MEN AND MATERIAL TO OCCUPY OUR TERRITORY. NO GOVERNMENT CAN TOLERATE SUCH AN INCURSION AND OUR GOVERNMENT CERTAINLY WILL NOT. // END ACTUALITY // // OPT // MR. VAJPAYEE ALSO SAYS IF PAKISTAN TRIES TO CHANGE THE BOUNDARIES OF THE "LINE OF CONTROL," THROUGH SATURDAY'S UPCOMING TALKS -- THOSE TALKS WILL END BEFORE THEY BEGIN. TWO OF THE THREE WARS INDIA AND PAKISTAN HAVE FOUGHT HAVE BEEN OVER KASHMIR. LAST YEAR BOTH COUNTRIES CONDUCTED NUCLEAR TESTS AND EARLIER THIS YEAR BOTH COUNTRIES TESTED MID-RANGE BALLISTIC MISSILES. // END OPT // INDIA SAYS, WHILE IT WILLING TO TALK TO PAKISTAN ABOUT ENDING THE CRISIS IN KASHMIR, IT WILL NOT END ITS MILITARY CAMPAIGN TO PUSH THE INFILTRATORS OUT OF ITS TERRITORY. INDIAN TROOPS ON TUESDAY CONTINUED THEIR ASSAULTS AGAINST A SERIES OF FOUR-THOUSAND METER-HIGH RIDGES IN KASHMIR KNOWN AS THE "TIGER HILLS" WHERE SEVERAL HUNDRED INFILTRATORS ARE DUG IN ON HIGH GROUND. INDIAN COMMANDERS SAY THEY HAVE PUSHED THE INFILTRATORS BACK ABOUT FOUR KILOMETERS FROM THEIR ORIGINAL POSITIONS WHICH WERE ABOUT SEVEN KILOMETERS INSIDE INDIAN TERRITORY. COMMANDERS SAY THE FIGHTING IS FIERCE AND AMOUNTS TO "VIRTUALLY INCHING FORWARD," IN SUB-FREEZING CONDITIONS. (SIGNED) NEB/JLT/PLM 08-Jun-99 5:27 AM EDT (0927 UTC) NNNN Source: Voice of America .