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14-05-1998

07/0800 HOURS OF 14-5-1998(THURSDAY)

NAWAZ: Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif has made it clear that Pakistan would continue to firmly resist Indiaís ambitions to establish its hegemony in South Asia and would take all necessary steps to safeguard its national security.

He was speaking at a banquet in honour of delegates of the Pakistan Development Forum in Islamabad Wednesday night.

PM: The Prime Minister referred to the new situation resulting from the ominous development in the region in the form of Indian nuclear tests. He said what has transpired in the past 3 days in Rajasthan desert in India less than a 100 miles from Pakistanís border is a matter of great concern.

Mr. Muhammad Nawaz Sharif said the purpose of India to carry out nuclear explosions on May 11 and 13 was not simply to test a wide range of weapons of mass destruction, ranging from nuclear artillery for battlefield use to missile warheads, that can destroy entire cities within seconds. But in real purpose was to acquire the status of the 6th full fledged nuclear weapon state. India Thursday seeks legitimacy for its de-facto status. He said Pakistan had been warning the international community that Indiaís nuclear programme was to establish its hegemony in the region but the world paid no heed to the warnings.

The Prime Minister said Pakistan has been working tirelessly to establish a nuclear weapon free zone in South Asia and has also advocated the establishment of a zero missile zone in the region. However, by deploying the Prithvi Missiles along its borders, India effectively negated the concept of a zero missile zone. By conducting 5 explosions in the past 3 days, India has similarly destroyed the concept of a Nuclear Weapon Free Zone in South Asia.

PAK-US: President Clinton is sending Assistant Secretary of State Strobe Talbott and General Anthony Zinni of the US Central Command to Pakistan to discuss with Pakistani leaders the situation arising out of the Indian nuclear tests.

A State Department spokesman said in Washington the United States deeply regretted the nuclear tests. He said American sanctions are very swift and will have a profound effect on their relations with India.


21/2200 HOURS OF 13-5-1998(WEDNESDAY)

CLINTON NAWAZ: US President Bill Clinton telephoned the Prime Minister Wednesday afternoon to exchange views on the dangerous situation that has arisen after the nuclear tests carried out by India.

He informed the Prime Minister that the Indian nuclear tests had come as a shock to him. He strongly condemned the action which exposed India in the eyes of the world. He reiterated that US administration is determined to enforce US laws relating to nuclear explosions and ensure that sanction envisaged in the law are implemented fully.

President Clinton said he recognised that the India action had created a serious threat to the security situation in South Asia. His administration considered Pakistan a close friend and ally, whose genuine defence and security requirements were fully recognised by the United States.

The Prime Minister emphasised that as a result of the Indian nuclear tests, an extremely dangerous situation had been created in the region. He recalled that in his letter or President Clinton he had drawn attention to the belligerent statements being made by the BJP leadership regarding the induction of nuclear weapons in the Indian military arsenal. He had addressed letters to other world leaders, but was disappointed that they failed to recognise the imminent threat posed by the Indian nuclear programme.

The Prime Minister, while regretting that the international community had done nothing to prevent India from carrying out these tests, emphasised that like any other country, Pakistan must give priority to its security needs and it had no option but to take appropriate steps to protect its sovereignty and security, in accordance with the aspirations of the people.

DEFENCE: Pakistan has vowed to reject any unilateral and discriminatory pressure on matters of its national security and expressed satisfaction over its ability to respond effectively to the new threats.

This was stated in a statement issued at the end of a meeting of the Defence Committee of the Cabinet presided over by the Prime Minister in Islamabad Wednesday.

It took stock of the situation arising from Indian nuclear tests and overt weaponisation by India defying international condemnation.

After comprehensively evaluating defence preparedness the meeting expressed satisfaction over Pakistanís ability to respond effectively and adequately to the new threats and challenges.

The meeting concluded that the reckless and highly provocative action by the Indian government has fundamentally altered the strategic situation in South Asia, besides dealing a severe blow to global non-proliferation.

Those who attended the meeting included, Foreign Minister, Mr. Gohar Ayub Khan, concerned federal ministers, Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff of Committee and services chiefs.

SENTATE STATEMENT: Meanwhile, making a statement a short while ago, the Foreign Minister declared that the India action which poses maximum and grave threat to Pakistanís security will not go un-answered.

He warned that responsibility for the consequences of any inevitability lies squarely on India and those who have colluded in the weaponisation of the Indian nuclear programme.

The Foreign Minister said India is now admittedly testing the whole range of nuclear weaponry including battle field and tactical nuclear weapons which are Pakistan specific.

Later, the House resumed discussion on the situation arising out of the nuclear tests conducted by India.

BENAZIR: The leader of the opposition Ms. Benazir Bhutto says, now if Pakistan undertakes a nuclear test it will be justified.

In her statement in London she said this in the failure of the western world that despite warnings India has undertaken the nuclear tests.

AITZAZ: The leader of the opposition in the Senate Mr. Aitzaz Ahsan has condemned India in the strongest terms for nuclear tests in quick succession.