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HindustanTimes Mon,21 Apr 2014

Omar: twin attacks aimed at derailing Indo-Pak dialogue

Toufiq Rashid , Hindustan Times  Srinagar, September 26, 2013
First Published: 18:07 IST(26/9/2013) | Last Updated: 11:25 IST(27/9/2013)

Condemning the twin terror attacks in the state, Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Omar Abdullah has said the attacks were aimed to derail the proposed Indo-Pak dialogue in Washington.

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Suggesting that Prime Minister Manmohan Singh should proceed with the initiatives of peace, Abdullah said calling off the dialogue would strengthen the "adverse elements" who don't want peace initiatives between the two countries to take place.

Calling the attacks "dastardly", Abdullah expressed solidarity with the families of the policemen, civilians and army personnel killed in the attacks. "Given our history and given the timing, as well as the location of this attack, the obvious aim is to derail the proposed dialogue between the Prime Ministers of India and Pakistan," he said.

"These are forces that have always been inimical to the interests of people in Jammu and Kashmir and always tried to derail any peace process that was thought to be initiated between India and Pakistan. They have always wanted to keep the ongoing turmoil in the state alive," said Abdullah. "This is clearly a step in that direction."

While stating that the attacks will bring in additional political pressures to resist any further movement in the dialogue process, Abdullah hoped that the Prime Minister would go ahead with the proposed talks. "While it is for the Prime Minister and his advisers to decide how to proceed further in this matter but as far as we in the state are concerned we have always supported peaceful resolution of problems in the state," the chief minister said.

"Calling off the peace process will help the adverse forces in accomplishing their mission," he added.

In two daredevil attacks on Thursday morning on a police station at Hiranagar in Kathua district of Jammu and a military formation in the adjoining Samba district, bordering Punjab state, militants killed four policemen, while six army personnel are also reported to have been killed in Samba. The attack, first of its kind in the Jammu province in the past 11 years, has occurred ahead of the scheduled meeting between the Indian and Pakistani Prime Ministers, Manmohan Singh and Nawaz Sharif, as also a UN General Assembly session in New York.

Omar Abdullah said the state police chief and senior bureaucrats have been sent to access the situation. "We will be calling a unified command meeting either on Thursday evening or Friday morning to access security lapses, if any," he added.

Abdullah suggested that the militants involved in the attack were probably part of a "recently infiltrated group". "The area where the first contact with these militants was established is in proximity to the international border besides the area is not known to harbour militants, shows that the infiltration must have taken place within 24 to 12 hours," Abdullah said.

He also restrained from blaming the Pakistani government for the attacks saying the attacks could have been orchestrated without the knowledge of the civil administration in Pakistan.

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