Thursday, Jun 06, 2002
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By Vladimir Radyuhin
``We are heartened by the understanding and sympathy from our Russian friends in our fight against cross-border terrorism,'' Mr. Mishra declared after talks with the Russian Defence Minister, Sergei Ivanov, on Tuesday. "Russia has a very good understanding of the situation (in South Asia),'' he said.
Mr. Mishra was on a one-day visit to Moscow to attend celebrations of the 10th anniversary of the Russian Security Council. For his part, Mr. Ivanov said Russia would "do everything to defuse the conflict between India and Pakistan.'' He said Russia was greatly concerned over the crisis because "Kashmir lies in the middle of the `arch of stability' Russia wants to build from Vancouver to Vladivostok.''
``Agreement has been reached that the President of Pakistan (Pervez Musharraf) will visit Moscow this year, and the Russian President, Vladimir Putin, will go to Delhi,'' Mr. Ivanov said. ``We attentively listened to Musharraf's assurances in Almaty that Pakistan in future will not allow terrorists to act from its territory and that they will be denied Islamabad's support,'' Mr. Ivanov said. Russia was coordinating its moves with other countries, including NATO and China.
``I will brief (the U.S. Defence Secretary, Donald) Rumsfeld in Brussels tomorrow on the outcome of the Almaty meetings (of Mr. Putin, with the leaders of India and Pakistan) ahead of his trip to the region,'' he told reporters.
Mr. Ivanov, who has just returned from a visit to China, said Beijing shared Moscow's perception of the India-Pakistan crisis. ``China shares Russia's and other countries' concerns over the situation in South Asia for the same reasons it has been a victim of terrorism, with Uighur separatists until recently getting training in Afghanistan,'' he said.
Mr. Mishra said that even though Gen. Musharraf, repeated in Almaty his promises to stop cross-border terrorism, "infiltration across the Line of Control has not yet stopped and terrorist training camps in Pakistan and Pakistan-controlled Kashmir continue to operate.''
``We await Pakistan to implement its promises," he added.
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