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RADIO PAKISTAN
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18-02-1999 
0700/0800 HOURS OF 18-02-1999

SARTAJ:

The Foreign Minister Mr.Sartaj Aziz has said that Kashmir is a core issue between Pakistan and India which must be resolved in accordance with the wishes of the Kashmiri people and UN Resolutions.

He expressed these views while reviewing two years of the Muslim League government with the special reference to foreign policy achievements in JAIZA Programme broadcast from Radio Pakistan last night.

The Foreign Minister said during the past two years Pakistan's prestige at the international level has received a boost and the world community started showing greater interest in the resolution of the Kashmir dispute.

He said following the nuclearization of South Asia, the world community fully recognises the fact that Kashmir was a nuclear flash point and needed to be resolved in a just and peaceful manner. The Security Council , P-5 and G-8 in their resolutions have stressed the need for the resolution of the Kashmir dispute which was main cause of tension in South Asia. President Mandela of South Africa also made the same call from the NAM platform.

The Foreign Minister observed that due to international interest in the Kashmir dispute , India showed willingness to discuss the issue during Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif's meeting with his Indian counterpart Mr.Vajpayee in September last year in New York. The two countries revived dialogue at the Secretary level and Islamabad round was held last year with Kashmir being discussed exclusively.

Referring to the forthcoming visit of the Indian Prime Minister to Pakistan, Mr.Sartaj Aziz said the Prime Minister would try to convince Mr.Vajpayee about the urgency for a just solution of the Kashmir dispute in the interest of peace and security in South Asia.

The Foreign Minister said during the past two years Pakistan's relations with other countries including China, and Muslim countries have further been strengthened and its relations with Russia are also improving. He reiterated that Pakistan's foreign policy was based on principles and it stood for peace and progress.

He also referred to economic difficulties the nation had to face in the wake of May nuclear tests. He was happy to note that multilateral financial institutions had lifted sanctions while the major donors were preparing to lift their individual sanctions.

PAK-US:

The balance of trade between Pakistan and United States is in favour of Pakistan.

A US official told APP in Washington that Pakistan's export to the United States are one point eight billion dollars while the US exports to Pakistan were about three hundred million dollars during the last year.

To a question he said the United States has put no restrictions on import of Pakistani yarn. He said there is no quota on imports of Pakistani yarn to the United States. On this occasion the Federal Commerce Secretary, Mr. Mansoor Ellahi who led Pakistani delegation for talks with the United States said that there meeting with the US officials were productive and both the countries were able to understand each other positions.

DELEGATION:

A six member Kenyan education delegation led by Education Minister Stephen Kalanzo Musyoka , currently on visit to Pakistan held a meeting with the Minister for Education Syed Ghous Ali Shah in Islamabad Wednesday.

The Minister briefed the delegation about the salient features of National Education Policy and told that by the year 2003, we will achieve the target of seventy percent literacy rate through formal system already in practice and non formal schooling system.

PAK-CHINA:

The Chinese Defence Minister General Chi Haotian is to arrive in Islamabad tomorrow for talks to further recent bilateral co-operation on defence matter between the two countries .

He will lead a sixteen member delegation including senior Chinese Military Commanders.

MUSHARAF:

The Chief of Army Staff General Pervaiz Musharraf has said that operational readiness, discipline and unflinching faith in Almighty Allah are crucial factors which go a long way in determining the performance of troops in the hour of trial.

The Chief of Army Staff observed this while addressing officers of the Multan Garrison yesterday. He reminded the officers of their enhanced role in view of the prevailing environment.

The Army Chief also visited the Corps Headquarters where the Corps Commander, briefed him on various operational, training, welfare and professional matters.

2100/2200 HOURS OF 17-02-1999

NAWAZ-VAJPAYEE:

The Prime Minister says the forthcoming visit by the Indian Prime Minister Mr.Vajpayee to Pakistan will offer opportunity to have a substantive dialogue between the two countries for the resolution of the core issue of Kashmir.

Addressing a business summit in Islamabad today, he criticised those who were critical of the planned visit by the Indian Prime Minister. He pointed out that it was for the first time that an Indian Prime Minister had himself expressed the desire to have highest-level dialogue for the resolution of Kashmir issue.

He said Pakistan believed in pursuing the solution of the Kashmir problem through dialogue and in that spirit would welcome the visit by the Indian Prime Minister

KASHMIR:

In occupied Kashmir, troops during a siege, blasted three houses in Achabal area of Tral and two bodies were recovered from debris. A prominent Mujahid, Muhammad Anwar Mir alias Imtiaz was arrested in Srinagar and killed in custody at Buttgund in Tral area which sparked anti-India demonstrations.

BUS :

Pakistan and India have signed an agreement for launching a Bus Service between Lahore and New Delhi.

Federal Secretary Communications, Dr. Muhammad Akram Sheikh and the Indian High Commissioner in Pakistan Mr.G.Partha Sarathy signed the agreement on behalf of their governments in Islamabad Wednesday morning..

The agreement envisages bus service between Lahore and New Delhi four times a week. Both the sides will operate two buses.