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Pakistan Cleric Declares Holy War

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    Pakistan Cleric Declares Holy War

    Well things are just turning out right...?

    Friday January 7 3:24 PM ET

    Pakistan Cleric Declares Holy War

    By KHALID TANVEER Associated Press Writer

    BAWAHALPUR, Pakistan (AP) - A Pakistani cleric freed to end the hijacking of
    an Indian Airlines plane declared a holy war today against India, and
    recruited volunteers to fight for the disputed region of Kashmir.

    Maulana Masood Azhar, the most prominent of the three militant prisoners
    released by India in exchange for the 155 passengers and crew aboard the
    aircraft, addressed tens of thousands of people outside a mosque in his
    hometown of Bawahalpur.

    ``There is no way open for us other than to wage jihad (holy war) against
    India for Kashmir's liberation,'' Azhar said during Friday prayers. ``I have
    come here to give a call for jihad.''

    The crowd responded with raised fists and promised to join the insurgency,
    which has been battling Indian soldiers for more than a decade demanding
    either outright independence for Kashmir or union with Islamic Pakistan.

    ``Indian soldiers are killing our brothers and raping our innocent sisters,''
    said Azhar, who was arrested by India in 1994. ``The world should tell us
    which is a bigger crime- the plane hijacking or Indian atrocities in Kashmir?''

    Five hijackers seized the Indian Airlines flight after it took off from Nepal Dec.
    24. The plane went on an odyssey across South Asia and the Middle East
    before landing Dec. 25 at an airport in southern Afghanistan.

    It remained there until Dec. 31, when the hijackers freed their hostages in
    exchange for the three Kashmiri militants and then disappeared.

    The hijacking crisis raised tensions between India and Pakistan, two
    nuclear-armed countries that have fought three wars over the past

    India has accused Pakistan of masterminding the hijacking, and says that all
    five hijackers were Pakistani. Pakistan, which has soundly condemned the
    hijacking, has dismissed the allegations.

    Newspaper reports said Friday that Pakistan had asked Nepal for a copy of
    India's inquiry report into the hijacking, hoping it would provide clues to the
    hijackers' identities.

    Pakistan and India both lay claim to all of Kashmir and have fought two wars
    over Kashmir since their independence from Britain in 1947. The two
    countries, which exploded underground nuclear devices in 1998, came close
    to another war this summer over the disputed region.

    Muslim militants groups, including Harakat-ul-Mujahedeen, routinely recruit
    Pakistanis to fight in Indian-ruled Kashmir.

    India accuses Pakistan of sending infiltrators into its part of Kashmir, but
    Pakistan denies the charge, saying that Kashmir's separatist movement is an
    indigenous struggle.


    Till next time***K_I_S_S***

    [This message has been edited by realpaki (edited January 07, 2000).]

    [This message has been edited by sabah (edited January 10, 2000).]


      news of Khalid Tanvar is little different from 'Washington Post' news. In washington post news, holy war is against both India and US.

      Anyway till Clinton visits India, there will be such statements and events. More so if he does not visit Pakistan.