SANDNet Weekly Update, March 27, 2001

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CONTENTS
March 27, 2001
Volume 2, #13

Nuclear Issues

1. Nuclear Sanctions
2. Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty
3. Pakistan Missile Testing
4. Pakistani Nuclear Deterrence
5. Report on Nuclear Strategy
6. India-PRC Nuclear Issues

India

1. Unilateral Ceasefire
2. India-PRC Relations

Pakistan

1. Pakistan-India Dialogue
2. Military Government

Kashmir

1. India-Pakistan Dialogue
2. All Parties Hurriyat Conference

Sri Lanka

1. Recent Violence
2. LTTE Ceasefire Conditions


Nuclear Issues
    
1. Nuclear Sanctions

Canadian Minister of Foreign Affairs John Manley announced that Canada had decided to lift sanctions imposed on India after the 1998 Pokhran nuclear tests. Manley said, “We have made our stand on the nuclear issue with India clear and the time has now come to move on.” He also said Canada “will continue to call upon India to renounce its nuclear weapons program.” Manley stated that restrictions on military and nuclear ties would continue, and that sanctions against Pakistan were being handled separately.

2. Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty

Sources reported that commanders of the Pakistani Army had recently met and given their unanimous approval to Chief Executive Pervez Musharraf to sign the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty once a consensus is developed among the political parties.

Seema Guha stated in the Times of India that signing the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty could give Pakistan a diplomatic edge it has lost since the Kargil incident. Mariana Baabar writes in Outlook India that the shift on the CTBT is related to Musharraf’s need to overcome the debt repayment crisis, but will likely cause a backlash as discontent with his regime grows.

Takeshi Hikihara, with the Asian Affairs Bureau of Japans’s Foreign Ministry, reiterated Japan’s promise of increased economic cooperation with Pakistan if it signed the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty.

C. Raja Mohan writes in the Times of India that India is unlikely to sign the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty, regardless of Pakistan’s decision, but will maintain its unilateral moratorium on nuclear testing.

3. Pakistan Missile Testing

Samar Mubarakmand, chairman of Pakistan’s National Engineering and Scientific Commission, stated that the Shaheen II missile would be ready for testing as soon as military government decides to schedule a test.

4. Pakistani Nuclear Deterrence

Pakistan Chief Executive Pervez Musharraf stated that Pakistan would maintain a minimum deterrence, which he said is quantifiable relative to an enemy’s strength and should be followed by the ability to threaten an enemy’s vulnerable targets beyond their tolerance threshold.

5. Report on Nuclear Strategy

The Hindu stated that Jane’s Intelligence Review reported that India has moved more slowly than Pakistan towards implementing a nuclear strategy, and that Pakistan has also moved more quickly towards implementing systems to ready a “more modest nuclear arsenal.”

Responding to the Jane’s report, India’s Foreign Ministry released a statement which asserted that India has a credible nuclear deterrent, but denied that it was country specific or part of an arms race.

6. India-PRC Nuclear Issues

An essay by Satish Kumar, a Research Scholar at Jawaharlal Nehru University, highlights the threat facing India as the PRC has nuclearized Tibet. Kumar states that in 1987, the PRC had 25 percent of its nuclear forces placed in Tibet, focused on heavy counter-force and counter-value damage to an enemy. Kumar argues that India is in danger of losing Tibet as a buffer zone between itself and the PRC.


India
    
1. Unilateral Ceasefire

Bishwashwar Mishra reports in the Times of India that the defense scandal which forced George Fernandes to retire as Defense Minister will likely mean that, with impending elections, Kashmir will cease to be a major issue of concern. Security experts stated that the All Parties Hurriyat Conference would not participate in peace talks because it was not in a position to end violence by any of the militant groups.

2. India-PRC Relations

PRC Premier Zhu Rongji will skip India on an upcoming your of South Asia. An official stated that there was too short a time to accomplish anything substantial between Zhu’s visit and Li Peng’s recent visit.


Pakistan
    
1. Pakistan-India Dialogue

Pakistan Chief Executive Pervez Musharraf received a message from Indian Prime Minister A.B. Vajpayee in honor of Pakistan Day, saying, “India remains committed to the establishment of good neighborly relations.” The Times of India reported that the momentum building towards the resumption of talks since the ceasefire extension has stalled.

Pakistan Chief Executive Pervez Musharraf stated that while India would say no to participation in the India-Pakistan conflict as mediators by the UN or the US, they should become involved anyway. Musharraf stated that while India wanted to go back to the Lahore Declaration from 1999, he argues that the Declaration does not serious address Kashmir. He also stated that the issue could not be referred to the International Court of Justice because Kashmir was not a disputed territory, but concerned the rights of people who did not want to be a part of India.
    
2. Military Government

In an effort to prevent a pro-democracy rally planned for Pakistan Day, Pakistani police reportedly detained hundreds of members of political parties.


Kashmir
    
1. India-Pakistan Dialogue

An essay in Outlook India by V. Sudarshan argues that the defense scandal will likely prevent Indian Prime Minister A.B. Vajpayee from moving his peace process from ceasefire to constructive dialogue. Sudarshan also argues that the controversy will prevent Vajpayee from overcoming the hardliner coalition represented by Home Minister L.K. Advani, which has objected to talks with the All Parties Hurriyat Conference.

2. All Parties Hurriyat Conference

All Parties Hurriyat Conference Chairman Abdul Gani Bhat stated that the Hurriyat would engage in talks with the Indian government after it was given a chance to travel to Pakistan to talk with the military government and with militant groups there.


Sri Lanka

1. Recent Violence

Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) “Sea Tigers” attacked a Sri Lankan Navy patrol two days before their unilateral ceasefire was due to end, killing seven. Sri Lankan Air Force jets also attacked a LTTE base. There were conflicting reports as to the casualties in both attacks.
    
2. LTTE Ceasefire Conditions

The LTTE stated that it may resume attacks outside Jaffna, including upon Colombo, if the army maintains its offensive against the LTTE.

 


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