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DATE=9/4/1999 TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT TITLE=PAK / INDIA (L ONLY) NUMBER=2-253859 BYLINE=AYAZ GUL DATELINE=ISLAMABAD CONTENT= VOICED AT: INTRO: Pakistan has put off releasing two Indian prisoners at the last moment after India objected to journalists being present at their handover to the International Committee of the Red Cross. Ayaz Gul reports from Islamabad. TEXT: Pakistan's foreign ministry had planned to release the Indian soldiers to the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) at a news conference in Islamabad on Tuesday. But the ministry spokesman, Tariq Altaf, says the handover has now been postponed because Red Cross officials said India objected to the presence of news media at the handover. The Pakistani foreign ministry wants the media present to verify the condition of the Indian soldiers to avoid, what Mr. Altaf calls, possible allegations by India of mistreatment of the prisoners. Earlier this year, India accused Pakistan of mutilating the bodies of soldiers who were killed during military clashes between the two countries in the disputed Kashmir region. //ALTAF ACT// We don't want to expose ourselves once again to (Indian) charges of mutilation and bad treatment and maltreatment. We have been bitten once, let me say, we are shy twice. //END ACT// An Indian statement (released by the Indian embassy in Islamabad) says the repatriation of its soldiers has to be in keeping with what it calls "the dignity of the soldiers and without public spectacle." The Pakistani government says the two Indian soldiers (Lance Naik Ram Singh and Sepoy Bajinder Singh ) were part of an Indian army party that tried to capture a Pakistani military post (in the Shyok-Turtok area) in Kashmir late last month. India says the two soldiers disappeared, along with four others, while on patrol along the "line of control" that divides the Himalayan region. New Delhi says the fate of the other soldiers is not yet known. (SIGNED) NEB/AG/KL 14-Sep-1999 11:20 AM EDT (14-Sep-1999 1520 UTC) NNNN Source: Voice of America .