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Pakistan

April 16, 1993

Kashmir has been a cause of tension between India and Pakistan for 45 years, as mentioned in your coverage of the New Yorker article about the near confrontation in 1990 (March 23). That spring tension was especially high between the two, but at no time did Pakistan deploy nuclear devices militarily.

The tension was amplified as a result of Indian police firing on and killing peaceful demonstrators in Kashmir in January, 1990. Since 1948, the U.N. has recognized the Kashmir issue as an international dispute, to be resolved by a plebiscite of the Kashmiri people; a democratic solution backed by Pakistan. India has refused to comply with the U.N. resolution.

The article reported correctly that all of Pakistan's efforts in the nuclear area have been defensive in nature. While the article had much to say about Pakistan's nuclear research, ironically it had very little to say about India's much larger nuclear program except that it was more extensive and advanced. The article did reveal that the Indian army, in its 1986 military exercise close to Pakistan's border, carried tactical nuclear weapons and actually considered using them against Pakistan.

The government of Pakistan submitted a proposal almost two years ago for a five-nation conference to forge a nuclear disengagement agreement in South Asia. We believe that working together these five nations--India, Pakistan, China, Russia and the United States--can attain the goal of a non-nuclear future for the region. Regrettably, India has not yet responded.

SYEDA ABIDA HUSSAIN

Ambassador of Pakistan, Washington

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