West Partisan Towards India: Musharraf

Prasun Sonwalkar/London
West Partisan Towards India: Musharraf
Bristling with anti-India sentiments, former Pakistan president Pervez Musharraf has accused the US and other western countries of being partisan towards India and repeated allegations that Indian supported rebels in Pakistan.

Pressed hard on whether there was any Pakistani complicity in Osama bin Laden's sheltering in Abbottabad, an apparently uneasy Musharraf countered the posers by alleging that India was aiding Baloch rebels in Pakistan.

In an interview to the BBC, Musharraf responded to tough questions by presenter Jeremy Paxman by saying that Pakistan was 'sensitive' about its nuclear assets and India.

He did not name Balochistan in the interview, but said: "Do you know we caught five truckloads of weapons very recently, just about two months back.

Five truckloads of anti-aircraft missiles, rocket launchers, mortars.

Now, who brought these five trucks? Who gave these? Americans or the Afghanistan government? No sir.

India gave them. And we know it."

He acknowledged fears in the west that Osama bin Laden had a support network in Pakistan, but claimed: "I can't imagine in my wildest dreams that the intelligence agency was doing something without telling me, so therefore there was no complicity at the strategic level."

Musharraf insisted that when he was in power, he did not know that bin Laden was sheltered in Abbottabad.

He said: "It is difficult to prove non-complicity. We can call it negligence, we can call it ineptitude, whatever, failure."

When Paxman pointed out to him western countries gave Pakistan a "great deal of money" in the war on terror, Musharraf said western nations should respect "our sensitivities. Our nuclear capabilities, our sensitivity is India.

If there is a partisan attitude in favour of India against Pakistan that doesn't go well with the people of Pakistan and also the government."

Claiming that there was anger in Pakistan against the United States because it allegedly took a one-sided view (in favour of India), Musharraf repeated the allegation that India was arming rebels in the country.

Paxman asked: "Your problem with India is your problem with India. It's not our problem with India.

I ask you again, why should western countries support Pakistan at great cost."

Musharraf responded: "because we are fighting terror."

He refuted Paxman's contention that Pakistan was blackmailing the western countries into giving it money, but said the people of Pakistan should also realise that they were not fighting a war for the United States, but for themselves.

Musharraf said: "The vast majority of Pakistan does not want the Talibanisation of Pakistan. So we have to defeat Taliban and al Qaeda. We are not fighting the United States’ war. And the United States must know that if they push Pakistan to the wall, well, what will happen to the region and to the world will be much more serious than what is happening."
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