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Satinder Bindra: Pakistan tests raise concerns

CNN's Satinder Bindra
CNN's Satinder Bindra  

NEW DELHI, INDIA (CNN) -- Tensions between India and Pakistan escalated further Sunday after Pakistan conducted its second short-range missile test in two days.

The neighboring countries' conflict over the disputed territory of Kashmir has stirred concern in the Western world because both India and Pakistan possess nuclear capabilities.

CNN Correspondent Satinder Bindra gauged India's reaction Sunday from New Delhi.

BINDRA: Publicly, at least, India [is] calling these tests "antics" and the response of what India says is a "nervous state." But privately, the Indians are very concerned. They view these tests as "provocative."

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The Indians also say they are upset that the response from the Western world has been so lukewarm. President Bush called these tests disappointing. India perhaps [was] expecting some harsher language.

India's prime minister [Atal Bihari Vajpayee] addressed a public rally here [Sunday]. And he's appealing to international diplomats to do more to help India in its fight against terrorism.

International diplomacy, of course, is very active. Several diplomats from across the Western world [are] calling upon [Pakistani President] Gen. Pervez Musharraf to stop infiltration of guerrillas and militants into the Indian side of Kashmir. Also, there is a lot of pressure on India to exercise restraint.

Diplomatic sources here in New Delhi are telling CNN that Musharraf is perhaps asking for concessions. He wants India to pull back its forces from the border with Pakistan. He wants Indian forces to be pulled back from Kashmir before he is willing to offer any concessions.

In the next few days, diplomacy will be stepped up even further when the [U.S.] Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage and the British Foreign Secretary [Jack Straw] will arrive in the region.




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