News


ASSOCIATED PRESS OF PAKISTAN
NEWS SUMMARY
(31-05-1999)




Air strikes continue,an Indian Major was killed : Dost Muhammad

NEW DELHI,May 31 (APP):An Indian Army Major,M Sarvanand, was killed in a close combat with freedom fighters in the Batalik sector of held  Jammu and Kashmir Saturday.

The defence spokesman,briefing newsmen today,said six "militants" also lost their lives in the Batalik sector in a close battle.The troops were supported by air strikes for the fifth consecutive day Sunday,pushing militants in all sectors in Kargil region and established control over key ridges,he claimed.

Meanwhile,Srinagar airport,which had been taken over by the IAF from May 26 following air strikes against freedom fighters,opened on Sunday to civilian traffic when an Indian Airlines asirbus flew in from here.

Replying to questions on the continuing air strikes,Malik declined to give out the specific timing of the air strikes ,saying the airforce needs to keep the surprise element of the attacks alive.

Villages in AJK being vacated to escape unprovoked bombardment by Indian army

MIRPUR (AJK) May 31 (APP): Several villages including Bandala Piana in Samani valley  in Azad Kashmir are being vacated  and the people have started shifting to safer places in Bhimber district to escape from unprovoked Indian firing.

So far seven people have been killed and 15 others injured by unprovoked Indian Army bombardment on the villages, officials told APP in Mirpur Sunday .

Bombardment by Indian troops with Mortars was continuing till filing of the report. Unprovoked firing by Indian troops is continuing from Reich Pehari and other Indian posts on Bandala, Piyana and other villages.

Seven killed, 15 injured by Indian army firing in AK village

MIRPUR (AJK), May 31 (APP): At least seven persons were killed and 15 others injured, five of them seriously as a result of unprovoked heavy shelling by Indian army on border village Bandala Piyana, on this side of the Line of Control in Samani valley, about 50 KM from here Sunday,  officials told APP this afternoon.

The officials said the casualties are expected to rise. Firing by Indian troops also damaged scores of houses in the village. SSP Bhimber Khalid Chohan and other officials of Bhimber district administration have rushed to Bandala
village to assess the situation. Further details are awaited.

Annan telephoned PM Nawaz Sharif: Every effort will be made to defuse the crisis

ISLAMABAD, May 31 (APP): UN Secretary General, Kofi Annan, telephoned Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif last evening and conveyed his appreciation to the Prime Minister for his initiative of offering to send his Foreign Minister to New Delhi for discussion in order to defuse the current situation.

The Secretary General expressed his concern over the deterioration in the situation and reiterated the need for
political solution of the Kashmir dispute.

The Prime Minister informed the UN Secretary General of the dangerous escalation caused by the unprovoked military
actions by India in the Kargil sector. He said that the use of military aircraft and helicopters gunship by India was unprecedented.

The Prime Minister stated that the Indian allegation of Pakistan's involvement in the alleged infiltration across the
Line of Control was baseless and a pretext to justify the current escalation.

India asked to deescalate situation at Kargil : Sartaj Aziz

ISLAMABAD, May 31 (APP): Foreign Minister Sartaj Aziz has said that Pakistan has asked India to deescalate the situation developing in Kargil and create such atmosphere which could reduce tension between the two countries.

"We have told India not to prolong it and create such atmosphere which could reduce tension and present situation is
deescalated", he told VOA.

Some incidents take place at the Line of Control (LoC) whenever the snow melts but warplanes and helicopters were never used at such scale since 1971, he added.

Sartaj Aziz said, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif had talked to his Indian counterpart and asked him that unsatisfactory
situation has been created within three months of the Lahore declaration and we ought to try to settle all issues through dialogue and not allow the situation to further deteriorate.

He said, Pakistan has offered that if India wanted, Foreign Minister (myself) may go to New Delhi and negotiate with Indian External Affairs Minister Jaswant Singh and find out any way for improving the situation.

Pakistan offers deployment of neutral observers at LoC

ISLAMABAD, May 31 (APP): Pakistan's Ambassador to the United States Riaz Khokhar has said if India really doubts that the government supports Kashmiri freedom fighters, New Delhi should accept Pakistan's offer for deployment of more international observers on the Line of Control.

"We have a number of time proposed to India that let us expand the role of UN Military Observer Group in India and
Pakistan", he told VOA. He said, after all what they are doing there. They should not only note down the ceasefire violations but also monitor the movement which India blames are made from Pakistan side.

If India does not like it, why some neutral observers are not invited to check this activity, he added.

The Ambassador while rejecting Indian allegations said Pakistan is providing only moral, political and diplomatic
assistance to Kashmiris who are struggling for their right to self-determination in held Kashmir.

Riaz Khokhar described these allegations as propaganda and said, it is India that has escalated the whole thing.

He said, India is propagating that the Pakistanis and Afghans militarily trained in Pakistan are engaged in fighting in
occupied Kashmir. Every body know that a big movement is underway in Kashmir and the people of Jammu and Kashmir are fighting for their freedom and to get themselves free from the clutches of India.

Kofi Annan concerned over Indo-Pak tension

ISLAMABAD, May 31 (APP) :UN Secretary General, Kofi Annan has expressed concern over tension between India and Pakistan in Kargil sector of the Line of Control (LOC).

Kofi Annan expressed his concern in the statement released by the United Nations spokesman, VOA reported.

The spokesman said, the Secretary General is greatly concerned over the tension between the two sides in Kargil
sector. He said, Kofi Annan has, however, expressed satisfaction that Prime ministers and other officials of the two countries have established contacts and shown their readiness to resolve their all problems including Kashmir through negotiations.

The spokesman said that the Secretary General, presently in Europe, is in contact with both the sides and is closely
watching the situation. The spokesman accepted that the Secretary General has received Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif's letter, in which he has called for UN intervention.

He, however, said, Kofi Annan has not made any immediate comment on the demand.

Waheed asks World powers to take notice of LoC violations

LAHORE, May 31 (APP) :World powers especially the United States should take notice of the on-going violations of Line of Control (LoC), by Indian forces to help avert any military conflict in South Asia.

Chairman National Assembly's Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs, Mian Abdul Waheed said this in a statement issued here  Sunday.

He said the Indian Prime Minister's statement regarding the continuation of attacks on LoC was reflective of the jingoistic attitude of the Indian leadership.

"Indian leadership's statements for dialogue and the continuiation of the attacks in the same breath were testimony to
their policy of duplicity," NA Committee chief said. He said India would continue an unstable country till the
resolution of Kashmir issue despite all the advancements in the missile and nuclear technologies.

He said Pakistan has taken the Muslim countries into confidence on the situation arising out after LoC violations
by India.   Waheed said Pakistan had a strong and stable government led by Prime Minister, Muhammad Nawaz Sharif unlike Vajpayee headed  fragile government in India. ...........