India-Pak standoff likely to top Bush-Putin summit agenda

Russian President Vladimir Putin is expected to take up India's case with his American counterpart George W Bush during the Kremlin summit on Friday by asking him to put pressure on Pakistan to stop cross-border terrorism, sources in Moscow said.

Russian President Vladimir Putin is expected to take up India's case with his American counterpart George W Bush during the Kremlin summit on Friday by asking him to put pressure on Pakistan to stop cross-border terrorism, sources in Moscow said.

The Russian presidential aide on foreign affairs Sergei Prikhodko, who confirmed that the standoff will top the international agenda during talks between Bush and Putin, said that Russia and US must work together to check further aggravation of the tension between India and Pakistan.
This is Kremlin's view and it intends to raise this issue at the summit talks, Prikhodko said in his pre-summit press briefing.

Defusing the tension between India and Pakistan depends only on the will of the United States, a top Russian defence analyst general (retd) Leonid Ivashov said speaking at a meeting with the Moscow-based foreign press corps in the run-up to the visit by the US President.

General Ivashov, ex-chief of the international relations department of the Russian defence ministry, said that Russia could also play a role in pacifying the South Asian nuclear rivals, noting that even when Pakistani regulars were fighting in Taliban militia's ranks, Moscow was maintaining contacts with Islamabad.

He, however, ruled out any bonhomie with Pakistan till islamabad mended fences with India.

Bureau Report

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