US media hails Vajpayee's invitation to Musharraf
27 May 2001
The Hindustan Times
New York: CHARGING PAKISTAN with recklessly supporting armed terrorists in Kashmir, the New York Times newspaper on Sunday welcomed the initiative of Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee to invite Pakistan's military ruler Gen Pervez Musharraf for talks saying it provides chance to both countries to explore more constructive approaches. In an editorial, it said though no early breakthroughs were likely, Washington should use new influence in New Delhi to help defuse the Kashmir issue. Stating that Vajpayee comes from a hindu nationalist party, the paper stressed he has lately taken a moderate line towards Kashmir. "Inviting Musharraf was probably his own idea. But Washington's consisted encouragement to India and Pakistan to resume diplomacy played a helpful role", it said. "It is encouraging, the Times said, that Indian and Pakistani leaders have now agreed to resume negotiations on Kashmir and other issues they broke off two years ago. Any short list of the most dangerous international conflicts would include Kashmir where world's two newest nuclear- armed states, India and Pakistan, are locked in a military confrontation that has twice erupted into war. the paper noted that U.S. relations with Pakistan have "chilled" as Islamabad turned away from democracy and maintained links with terrorists in Kashmir and with Afghanistan's ruling Taliban whereas Washington's ties with democratic India warmed considerably. "This realignment was evident during president Bill Clinton's visit the subcontinent last year and has been carried further by the Bush administration. India has given surprisingly warm reception to Bush's policies, including controversial missile defense plans and Washington should use its new influence in New Delhi to help defuse the Kashmir issue", it added.