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Tuesday, 25 September, 2001, 15:23 GMT 16:23 UK
Indian and Pakistani press analyse sanctions removal
Musharraf and Vajpayee
Welcome news for the leaders of India and Pakistan
Indian and Pakistani press have carried wide-ranging commentary on the scrapping of US sanctions against them.

In Pakistan, News International writes, "The fact that it is being done in concert with similar action in India... will reduce some of the euphoria".

The paper is doubtful that the USA will open the "cornucopia of plenty... as participation in the anti-terrorism coalition is mandatory and not voluntary, which reduces the size of the carrot."

It says there is no certainty that this gesture will be sufficient to meet "high expectations in Pakistan for having placed ourselves on the firing line."

It says the country should have learnt its lesson from former President Zia ul-Haq's show of "cringing gratitude for the few scraps the Americans gave when the aims should have been higher".

The Daily Nation writes that Pakistan's help to the US should be seen as being motivated by principles rather than money.


These very sanctions were considered ... as central to maintaining a so-called non-proliferation regime

The Frontier Post - Pakistan

The Frontier Post based in Peshawar says it is "amazing" that US legislators "have overnight been converted" to the view that lifting sanctions is in their best interest.

"These very sanctions were considered ... as central to maintaining a so-called non-proliferation regime.

"Now suddenly, the sun seems to have broken through the clouds in Washington, and Pakistan is "favoured" with this American largesse, which is... the reversal of an unjust and discriminatory set of restrictions," the paper says.

The Dawn points out that scrapping sanctions is what Pakistan needs "to join the fight against terrorism and also bear the rising burden of Afghan refugees".

Advantage Pakistan

In India, the newspapers are overwhelmingly of the opinion that neighbouring Pakistan benefited most from the move.


India had been in line for this carrot anyway; it was Pakistan that was being rewarded for being a good boy

The Indian Express

"When it happened there was no surprise for India and no great enthusiasm beyond a curt 'thanks'," The Indian Express writes in its editorial.

"India had been in line for this carrot anyway; it was Pakistan that was being rewarded for being a good boy," it says.

Another columnist in the paper writes that "while India was jumping up to offer unsolicited logistic support to the USA, Pakistan left us looking foolish by demanding $30 billion debt write-off, lifting of sanctions and asking India to 'layoff' in return for his help".

The Statesman in Calcutta says, "What the simultaneous lifting of sanctions means, ironically, is that the slight advantage that India had gained over Pakistan ... because of Pakistan's delinquent missile programme... and its sponsorship of terror in Kashmir, has been nullified."

Indian Missile
Nuclear missile testing led to the sanctions

It says India may have wanted the sanctions to remain in place "until the camps in Pakistan are liquidated, but this game is not being played on India's terms".

Irony

The Tribune talks of the "sobering reality of global power" where US strategy can "sweep away its laboriously built ...policy towards this region".

"The irony is that Pakistan has taken its place in the front line of the US-led coalition against terrorism, despite its own adverse record on this subject.


As its economy stabilises, Pakistan could actually settle down to the business of creating prosperity..., leaving little time for warlike posturing

The Economic Times - India

"As a result, India will see no end to its travails at the hands of Pakistan-backed militants...," in Kashmir, the writer laments.

The Economic Times of India agrees that Pakistan will be the bigger beneficiary, as India's reliance on foreign funds has fallen sharply.

"Indian hawks will not be happy, but an economically stable Pakistan is better for India than one where the leadership tells its citizens to eat grass and arm for battle against India," the paper notes pragmatically.

"As its economy stabilises, Pakistan could actually settle down to the business of creating prosperity..., leaving little time for warlike posturing", The Economic Times says.

See also:

23 Sep 01 | South Asia
South Asia welcomes sanctions move
23 Sep 01 | Business
Sanctions boost for Pakistan economy
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