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'Sharif's call for 'unilateral Siachen troops withdrawal' reflects wisdom'

Islamabad, Thu, 19 Apr 2012 ANI

Islamabad, Apr 19(ANI): Pakistan Muslim League- N (PML-N) chief Nawaz Sharif has rightly chosen wisdom rather than 'national honour' by advising a "unilateral" troops withdrawal from the Siachen Glacier, an editorial in a Pakistan daily has said.

The Express Tribune said Sharif no longer supports the argument that backs the revisionist strategy of responding to challenge with counterchallenge taking into account the Kargil operation took place during his tenure as the prime minister.

The editorial citing a recent interview in which an ex-general lost his temper on being asked about demilitarization of the region and added: "if Pakistan-India relations improve, there will be no need for anyone to return to Siachen."

"In 1962, India fought a war with China after the Chinese built a road through Aksai Chin, a part of the Kashmir territory under Indian control. The former lost the war but learned the futility of fighting for a 'strategically unimportant' piece of frozen real estate. Now India's trade with China is worth $100 billion," it said.

The editorial pointed out that a work titled 'India's Emerging Nuclear Posture' said India has unofficially accepted that the territory it lost in Aksai Chin in the Jammu and Kashmir sector was of more strategic value to China (because of the route connecting it with Tibet) than to India, which has allowed the country to normalise trade relations with China.

It said the Indian army is interested in remaining deployed at the Siachen because it receives a huge budget for being stationed at the region and has also linked its presence to glacier research, which it says will help in exploring the South Pole for minerals, and possibly oil.

"Our army is brave but why should it prove right the adage that it is better to be "unbrave" because it teaches us to live on the basis of wisdom rather than emotion," the editorial concluded. (ANI)

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