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Pakistan condemns demolition of mosque in Ahmedabad


ISLAMABAD, Dawn: Pakistan on Monday condemned the recent demolition of a century-old mosque in Ahmedabad, reportedly under the instructions of the chief minister of the Indian state of Gujarat.

"It is regrettable that the chief minister of Gujarat, a known communalist and extremist, continues to foment anti-Muslim frenzy for political gains," a Foreign Office spokesman said in a statement. This reprehensible act aimed at depriving the Muslim minority in Ahmedabad of their fundamental right to worship in accordance with their religious belief, should be condemned and the mosque should be rebuilt, he added.

In another statement on Indian deputy prime minister L.K. Advani's recent observations about a change in President Pervez Musharraf's position on terrorism, the spokesman described the remarks as distorted and malicious.

During his visit to Agra last year, the President had at no point justified the killing of innocent people in occupied Kashmir or anywhere else. He pointed out that it did not behove someone occupying the office of the deputy prime minister of India to indulge in such false and made-up attributions.

The spokesman stated that there was no change in the position of the government that the struggle of Kashmiris for self-determination was a freedom struggle and that it could not be equated with terrorism. Indeed, he added, the Kashmiri people were being subjected to the worst form of state terrorism by the Indian occupation forces.

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