Musharraf says militants trained against India

Published: October 6, 2010
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A handout photograph shows former Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf appearing on the BBC's the Andrew Marr Show on September 3, 2010.   PHOTO:REUTERS

A handout photograph shows former Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf appearing on the BBC's the Andrew Marr Show on September 3, 2010. PHOTO:REUTERS

Pakistan had trained underground militant groups to fight in Kashmir, said former president General (retd) Pervez Musharraf in an interview with a German magazine Der Spiegel.

Musharraf’s candid remarks came days after he announced his return to active politics from London where he has been living in self-imposed exile. “They (underground militant groups to fight against India in Kashmir) were indeed formed,” he said. Asked why Pakistan trained militant underground groups to fight India in Kashmir, the former president said Nawaz Sharif’s apathy to the Kashmir issue was one of the reasons, so was the fact that the world had turned a blind eye to the dispute.

“Yes, it is the right of any country to promote its own interests … when India is not prepared to discuss Kashmir at the United Nations and is not prepared to resolve the dispute in a peaceful manner,” Musharraf claimed.

He lashed out at the international community, particularly the West, for persistently ignoring the Kashmir issue, and for singling out Pakistan for all blame.

“The West was ignoring the resolution of the Kashmir issue, which is the core issue of Pakistan. We expected the West – especially the US and important countries like Germany – to resolve the Kashmir issue. Has Germany done that?” the former military ruler asked.

Musharraf launched his political party the All Pakistan Muslim League in London and announced his intention to contest the 2013 election.

“The West blames Pakistan for everything. Nobody asks the Indian prime minister, why did you arm your country with a nuclear weapon? Why are you killing innocent civilians in Kashmir? Nobody was bothered that Pakistan got split in 1971 because of India’s military backing for Bangladesh,” he said.

Musharraf added that the  worst blunder of the US would be to quit in Afghanistan without winning. “Then militancy will not only prevail in Pakistan, India and Kashmir, but perhaps also in Europe, the UK and in the US. That’s my belief,” he said.

Published in The Express Tribune, October 6th, 2010.

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Reader Comments (47)

  • Anonymous
    Oct 5, 2010 - 5:59PM

    “Musharraf accepted that Pakistan had trained underground militant groups to fight in Kashmir”
    – The proverb ”As you sow so shall you reap’ best fits here. The very basis reason for all the chos in Pakistan can be attributed towards this policy adopted by Govt. & its people of Pakistan. Now the Serpant that has been bred to spread terror in India has bit the hand that feeds. Truth will prevail over fanaticism.Recommend

  • a ninny mouse
    Oct 5, 2010 - 7:02PM

    would these ‘underground militant groups’ be needed if india the supposed ‘worlds largest democracy’ heeded to the cries of the kashmir people or even take into account the plebiscites of the UN? indias only policy is shoot to kill. reap what ye may sewRecommend

  • Malik Tabeer
    Oct 5, 2010 - 7:30PM

    i don’t know why A Q khan give statement against pakistani Army dhnm
    and whateve he did for pakistan , he so pose to serve pakistan like every pakistani duty is so

    Pakistan Army is our asset and our pride Recommend

  • A Suhail
    Oct 5, 2010 - 7:45PM

    @anonymous. So what’s happening in Kashmir right now is also truth prevailing over fanaticism of indian state. What’s happening in Maoist South is also truth prevailing over fanaticism. Don’t lecture us when people are having their rights trumpled in India. That India shinning slogan is a hogwash. Recommend

  • faraz
    Oct 5, 2010 - 8:19PM

    The genius has openly accepted which was already known to everyoneRecommend

  • H.A Hasan
    Oct 5, 2010 - 9:36PM

    Be cautioned about what is going on a private TV network. It is not a hidden thing that this channel has a personal tussle with Pervez Musharraf. So they are trying to notorious Musharraf on the cast of nation interest. What Musharraf said about Kashmir is needed to see in whole context of interview. If you read this interview, the reporter said “Why did you form militant underground groups to fight India in Kashmir?’’
    Musharraf replied,” They were indeed formed. The government turned a blind eye because they wanted India to discuss Kashmir.”
    Reporter: It was the Pakistani security forces that trained them.
    Musharraf: The West was ignoring the resolution of the Kashmir issue, which is the core issue of Pakistan. We expected the West — especially the United States and important countries like Germany — to resolve the Kashmir issue. Has Germany done that?
    Reporter: Does that give Pakistan the right to train underground fighters?
    Musharraf: Yes, it is the right of any country to promote its own interests when India is not prepared to discuss Kashmir at the United Nations and is not prepared to resolve the dispute in a peaceful manner.
    That was all Q and A about Kashmir, now you all critics tell me what he said is that wrong? Or against the Pakistan. We should not trust whom they have a tussle with Musharraf. Recommend

  • lal
    Oct 5, 2010 - 10:19PM

    Does Musharaff understand what is the implication of his statements for Pakistan in International Community? Who will trust Pakistan ?Recommend

  • Cronous
    Oct 5, 2010 - 10:39PM

    “would these ‘underground militant groups’ be needed if india the supposed ‘worlds largest democracy’ heeded to the cries of the kashmir people or even take into account the plebiscites of the UN? ”

    ROFL….I guess India should heed such cries when Pakistan heeds the cries of Balochis who want nothing more than to break away from Pakistan. Spare us your hypocritical lectures, we don’t hear they cries of former militants and rock throwing morons very well. Additionally the UN resolutions on Kashmir were taken under Chapter 6, which are not mandatory (they are mere suggestions for conflict resolution). India is NOT required to do anything by them. Of course if you guys want to become even more of a pariah state, you are more than welcome to do so.Recommend

  • Zahid
    Oct 5, 2010 - 11:10PM

    RIghtly said by Musharraf. Just like India/USA and other countries, Pakistan has right to promote its own interest. The facts about fighting groups are already known by everyone. Actual thing is we need to focus on Kashmir issue to resolve long standing bone of contention b/w India and Pak Recommend

  • Salim Ansari
    Oct 5, 2010 - 11:28PM

    The “world” will not step in and hand over Kashmir to Pakistan or let Kashmir become independent. If that is the expectation of the ruling elite in Pakistan, they are living in a fools paradise. The “world” knows that it is Pakistan that started the Kashmir invasion in 1948 (to which India reacted) and all subsequent wars with India. Musharraf’s statements have only strengthened India’s position in Kashmir and the world and she will only find more and more support. As far as a plebiscite is concerned – havn’t the demographics in Azad Kashmir changed beyond reversal ? what about Gilgit/Baltistan ? what about the land gifted to China ? Can all that be undone – because The UN resolution demands that the status of J&K be returned to what it was before Pakistan and India took over. It is not very difficult for the “world” to see that Pakistan talks about a plebiscite in Indian Kashmir ONLY.

    As far as Kashmir is concerned, it is REALLY game over.Recommend

  • Sajid
    Oct 5, 2010 - 11:32PM

    Does Musharaff understand what is the implication of his statements for Pakistan in International Community? Who will trust Pakistan?

    No one trust Pakistan. If any one in west have trusted, west should have been supported pakistan on kashmir issue. Now this case even at the loose end to win Kashmir. Recommend

  • Human
    Oct 6, 2010 - 1:30AM

    Mr. Musharraf, You sound like a baby. According to you, the world is out to get Pakistan. Did you ever think why? Let me tell you – the reason is ur deception. You say one thing and do another. In this modern world, it is very important to do as you say else no one believes you. I hope you dont believe that the world did not know that ISI is training militants agains India. So stop thinking that the world is idiot. Please respect everyones smartness. If you want to fight with India, say openly and go to war. At least you will do what you say. Even your Kargil war was a stupid operation. And the reason is you were afraid to ackowledge initially that Pakistan is at war.Recommend

  • Oct 6, 2010 - 2:35AM

    I am a fan of General Musharraf with some reservations here and there. if I am asked what was his biggest folly during his reign, I would say it was his Kashmir policy. He took a complete U-turn on our just stand on kashmir and instead followed a road map which not only gave much space to India on one side and created complete despondency and discouragement among the kashmiri freedom fighters on the other. Thanks God, the accord based on his road map was not given effect and, hopefully, we are now back on our old right stand. The present government should completely dissociate from his plan and pass a resolution in the national assembly reaffirming our stand on plebiscite and reiterating our solidarity with the freedom fighting kashmiris. Recommend

  • Pakistani
    Oct 6, 2010 - 10:41AM

    you talk kashmir and that too according to our wishes otherwise we will kill innocent people in your country…gr8 policy…GOD is punishing pakistan for its sin Recommend

  • Pakistani
    Oct 6, 2010 - 10:44AM

    @ ninny mouse and all such people, I want to ask only one questions….killing innocent people to achieve your goal is right? whether this is what islam says? my knowledge of islam is limited so would request some scholar to comment…and if it is right then what is the diff between Pakistani and India army…Recommend

  • Oct 6, 2010 - 10:59AM

    When you read through Faisal Shahzad’s admission about taking the Oath of US Citizenship under false pretensions and of his belief that it is his right to defend Islam even if it means killing as many people as possible, you realise that Faisal Shahzad and General Musharraf are two sides of the same coin.

    Kashmir is an issue for Pakistanis such as Nawaz sharif and other civilians but not at the cost of peaceful relations with neighbours and all-important trade.

    Dont let the army impose its agenda on the nation – 1971 was heart-breaking but while the civilians in Pakistan have learnt from it and moved on the army harps about it and for them Kashmir is nothing more than pay back. I truly wish the stone-throwing youngsters in the Kashmir valley realise the larger game at play here and understand the nature of the petulant generals and their equally petulant offsprings running the show.Recommend

  • Tony Singh
    Oct 6, 2010 - 11:26AM

    @Zahid
    Killing innocents. a good way of promoting interest of the country. Now these goups are pomoting their own interests in Pakistan. Indeed one will reap what one sows.Recommend

  • Oct 6, 2010 - 11:31AM

    @ H A Hassan.
    Thank you for producing a part of the script of the interview. The script proves clearly that Musharraf has confessed what is being projected on the media channel you are referring to. Recommend

  • Azeem
    Oct 6, 2010 - 12:48PM

    If im not mistaken has Musharraf just committed an act of Treason for a 3rd time.Recommend

  • Oct 6, 2010 - 2:22PM

    General Musharraf’s such statements are disappointing his fans. He is showing lack of political acumen which is a very essential ingredient in a politician. He should think twice before uttering on such tricky national issues.Recommend

  • Lahori
    Oct 6, 2010 - 2:40PM

    Can Musharf tell us, that how much $$$$$ he got for this statement……aaahaha…”Patriot” or “Traitor”..?
    I think “Conspirator” is best for his shamefull personality. Recommend

  • Zahid
    Oct 6, 2010 - 3:48PM

    @Tony
    What about the innocent people being killed in Kashmir? Recommend

  • Tony Singh
    Oct 6, 2010 - 4:41PM

    @Zahid
    Now that the forme head of Pakistan admits your Army trained militants to cause trouble in Kashmir, then only and only Pakistan is responsible for death of Kashmiris. who else??? Keep your head buried on the sand!Recommend

  • MI
    Oct 6, 2010 - 4:43PM

    Please do not get trapped by a group of media sponsored by Shariefs to work against Musharraf. Musharraf’s should be read in whole contest, which shows as mentioned above by A.A. Hussain:

    If you read this interview, the reporter said “Why did you form militant underground groups to fight India in Kashmir?’’
    Musharraf replied,” They were indeed formed. The government turned a blind eye because they wanted India to discuss Kashmir.”
    Reporter: It was the Pakistani security forces that trained them.
    Musharraf: The West was ignoring the resolution of the Kashmir issue, which is the core issue of Pakistan.

    Musharraf is a true and patriotic Pakistani, while the media group engaged to defame Musharraf is anti Pakistan. Recommend

  • Tony Singh
    Oct 6, 2010 - 4:47PM

    This interview was a conspiracy hatched by CIA/Mossad/RAW to make Mushraff malign Pakistan???Recommend

  • Wahid
    Oct 6, 2010 - 5:00PM

    @zahid,

    Your question to tony is an oxymoron.

    If we now accept that Pakistan (per Musharraf) was indeed training and sending militants to Kashmir and elsewhere in India, then it automatically becomes true that most of the people being killed by Indian security forces were indeed militants and not innocent people. This is and has always been India’s position. They themselves admit to collateral innocent lives being killed but their thrust has always been to killing the Pakistan sponsored militants.

    This also gives legitimacy to their demand of first eliminating terror and then talking. It also has given complete sanctity to their allegations that mumbai attacks were done by Pakistani’s and that the army / ISI was involved.

    Musharraf in one stroke has destroyed the credibililty of Pakistan by admitting to state sponsored terrorism and legistimized everything that India has been saying all along.

    Two conclusions – One that he has goofed up big time. Second and more importantly, we should be worried that Pakistan has and is using such policies. A lot of what we see today in Pakistan is essentially an outcome of state sponsored terrorism.Recommend

  • Arif
    Oct 6, 2010 - 5:16PM

    Come Musharraf come. Run Nawaz run.Recommend

  • mussarat ahmedzeb swat
    Oct 6, 2010 - 5:24PM

    Someone should ask Mussaraf WHY train people and make them into terrorists in Swat in his regime,Swat is not part of Kashmir, since he is confessing and would not lie and is a patriot.Recommend

  • Shani Syed
    Oct 6, 2010 - 5:35PM

    @ HA Hassan
    rightly said and thanx for sharing the whole context, still some people will keep on the mindless chatter about india being great in crushing kashmiris right for freedom.
    And as if india is an innocent baby and RAW creates no terrorists which are active all over Pakistan, what Paksitan does is self defense and Kashmiris are our brothers, even if kashmir gets liberated and become totally independent without adjoining Pakistan, india will crush it like its doing to Nepal and the threat in the region would not only be to Pakistan but to our friendly neighbour China as well, Kashmiris dont want to stay with india you dont need a refrendom to tell you that fact and Kashmir may not be able to exist independently due to india.
    Though in alot f things I find Musharraf some what better than others, I found his Kashmir policy vague very vague…I hope he hasbetter plans in favor of Kashmir this time. I dont even see the kashmir issue so actively supported openly on media by Pakistan any more, if we are really serious about it we need to firmly take a stand on it and let the world know there shall be no compromise on kashmir, we wont negotiate with india unless Kashmir is addressed and the solution should be the one that Kashmiris want. It is necessary if you want peace in the South Asia belt else india will just try and be the bully its been trying to be. May Allah help our brothers and May Allah protect Kashmir and Pakistan Ameen.Recommend

  • kamal
    Oct 6, 2010 - 9:21PM

    @Shani Syed,you have gr8 knowledge about Kashmir but what about Baloochistan…where thousands disappear.Before pointing fingers at others just think what you are doing…Recommend

  • Rajesh Kumar
    Oct 6, 2010 - 9:38PM

    @Suhail. Now Musharaff has admitted to training militants against India. This has been what India saying since 1980s, which were always denied by Pakistan. India have every right to take action against militants and defend against militants. Fighting against militants is not state terrorism. There are hundreds of innocent Muslims who are being killed by Taliban daily in Pakistan. We all know who were the helpers and supporters of these elements in the past. Pakistan army is now fighting terrorists in FATA and even using fighter aircraft and helicopter gunships against terrorists, even video of extrajudicial killing of pashtoons by army was also surfaced. India has never said this as pakistan’s state terrorism. There should not be double standard. Number of mosques were recently destroyed by Taliban in Pakistan, but many hardliners only interested in Babri Mosque. Why you are not condemning taliban openly. Terrorism whether it is India or Pakistan should be condemned.Recommend

  • Anoop
    Oct 6, 2010 - 9:43PM

    @Wahid,

    Excellent comment. Musharaff has accepted what no Pakistani leader had accepted.

    Kashmir was peaceful before 1987 rigged elections and there is no reason why it cant return to the same state. J&K has 3 parts: Jammu, Ladakh and Kashmir. The first 2 are firmly integrated into India but Kashmir has proved to be a little tricky. Recommend

  • tehmina tariq
    Oct 6, 2010 - 10:27PM

    Do we really expect our ex presidents, prime ministers and chiefs of staff to be so candid and careless when speaking to anyone? Isn’t this treason??? Do his policies and their results give one confidence about his possible reentry into local politics?
    T.T.Recommend

  • Deepak
    Oct 7, 2010 - 1:18AM

    Many of the readers have questioned weather Musharaff should have said this instead of weather this is correct or not.

    Those who cared to see the detailed UN resolution will clearly find that in UN Charter Pakistan forces were asked to leave the Indian territory that Pak infiltrated and then only India and UN would carry out a plebiscite. But Pakistan never vacated the infiltrated territory.

    I strongly believe that Nehru should have placed efforts for referendum in J & K in late forties itself. Indian public would not have minded much at that time.

    But now sixty years later when UN itself has stated the futility of decade old UN resolution (that pakistan keep harping about) in changed demographic environment, in the light of facts that millions of hindus have been forced out of Kashmir because of Pakistan sponsored terrorism and many Indian Muslims have also been killed by terrorists in affected regions, it will be a shame for India to compromise with Pakistan on Kashmir.

    I think Pakistan also missed opportunity to preach plebiscite stuff to China on Tibet.Recommend

  • basharat
    Oct 7, 2010 - 5:20AM

    @ To keep the record straight, I dare say, your statement about U N resolution about Kashmir is not correct .
    The Security Council through its resolution declared kashmir to be a disputed territory , it further declared that the people of Kashmir had right of self determination to decide their future . It was was also decided that India and Pakistan both, shall pull out their armed forces from the territory under their occupation so that U N Forces could take the control of the whole territory for holding of the plebiscite independently and without interference from any side. India and Pakistan both agreed to this arrangement and signed their willingness. An Australian High Court Judge was appointed to supervise withdrawal of Indo Pakistan armed forces . India did not cooperate with the U N Missions appointed from time to time , nevertheless continued admitting that the people of Kashmir have right of self determination for their political future . Indian stand that Kashmir is an integral was floated after emboldened by soviet union.
    It would be miscalculation of the situation that with passage of time, Indian occupation will be accepted by Kashmiri people and people of Pakistan .

    General Musharaf , took daring step and offered many alternate possibilities towards solving the problem and asked India to come out with its suggestion , reply is as usual ; Kashmir is attoot ang of India, the stand is absurd and unwise on face of it .Recommend

  • witness
    Oct 7, 2010 - 9:57AM

    Musharaff has accepted it before also. He even accepted Kargil war and said it was kargil that bought Indians to negotiating table and which is trueRecommend

  • Asmat Jamal
    Oct 7, 2010 - 11:24AM

    Musharraf is still Indian at heartRecommend

  • Indian
    Oct 7, 2010 - 1:49PM

    @Asmat Jamal, do’nt insult Indians…Recommend

  • Waqar
    Oct 7, 2010 - 3:02PM

    Its a misrepresentation of his actual comment… see clarification by his representative… he was misquoted Recommend

  • mak
    Oct 7, 2010 - 3:26PM

    Musharraf has spoken the truth and one shouldn’t see this in bad light. We have blamed our leaders for years for lying to the nation or for limited public disclosure. Now that someone has spoken the truth – we cannot digest it. We as Pakistani people also need to mend our ways instead of always blaming the govt, armed forces etc for all the problems in Pakistan. All along we had an idea that Pakistan Army was the architect behind the Kargil act – so why are people admitting it sheepishly. Embrace it people – now that truth is being exposed not only relating to Kargil but also about corruption in politics and sports; we should take it as a step forward because the people behind it are actually being exposed and the public is not living in disillusion. Kargil invasion, I won’t count as a problem because it was required and the indian forces should always know that we have our means of bringing them to the negotiating table even though they continue to disappear behind diplomatic cover.

    Gradually, many issues in pakistan are being exposed and the culprits unveiled – this will help build a new and better pakistan and it is the responsibility of the people to digest the information in a positive manner rather than a reactive way, to bring about a wholesome change! god bless Pakistani and the Pakistani people.Recommend

  • Maz
    Oct 7, 2010 - 4:55PM

    My dear MAK i agree to every thing u say, please people come forward accept the realities and stop living in the dream which corrupt poeple and parties having been showing us all these years!!!! Mushraff ZinabadRecommend

  • Deepak
    Oct 7, 2010 - 6:03PM

    @Bashrat
    I appreciate your approach to attempt to be based on facts. But please allow me to quote following from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/UnitedNationsSecurityCouncilResolution_47

    “The resolution recommended that in order to ensure the impartiality of the plebiscite Pakistan withdraw all tribesmen and nationals who entered the region for the purpose of fighting and that India leave only the minimum number of troops needed to keep civil order. The Commission was also to send as many observers into the region as it deemed necessary to ensure the provisions of the resolution were enacted. Pakistan ignored the UN mandate and continued fighting, holding on to the portion of Kashmir under its control”

    I would appreciate if you can provide any authentic link (no pakistani/indian site please) from any reputed source to strengthen your point.Recommend

  • Bunty
    Oct 7, 2010 - 6:16PM

    By saying this statement, what is Musharraf trying to prove? Is he mentally in the right mind-set to realise the implications such statements can have when they come out from people like him? Notwithstanding the west, since when did Pakistani leaders start adopting the policy of Pakistan-bashing? And what benefits do they get by telling the world that there are jihadis running around in their country….why not just ratherkeep quiet about it instead of causing an embarrasment to the millions of citizens of this countryRecommend

  • Tony Singh
    Oct 7, 2010 - 7:40PM

    This inteference in other country’s internal affairs has been the cornerstone of Pakistan’s foreign policy (Dictated by Pakistan Army) . They are meddling in Afganistan and to an extent in Iran too, all in the name of National interest. The domestic interest of Pakistan’s Army is served by first interfering in internal affairs of other countries and when those countries retaliate, cobble up large sums of money in name of “National secuity” for personal benefit. Kargil intrusion is case in the point.Recommend

  • Asmat Jamal
    Oct 8, 2010 - 11:34AM

    My friend”indian” is not happy with my statement. Ok deal, you take your stuff Zia Ul Haq and Musharraf back and return our Manmohan and Gujral back.
    DoneRecommend

  • Afaq
    Oct 11, 2010 - 10:11PM

    We don’t need you Musharraf just enjoy your lavish life in UK. Can you please answer my simple question that you belong to a middle class family and you are just a government officer. From which sources you made a farm house and spacious villa in the posh area in Karachi and other foreign properties? We Pakistanis knows you want more lavish life and make money for you generation. Recommend

  • Puck
    Nov 10, 2010 - 4:30AM

    Asmat, but having Zia and Musharraf come to Pakistan and Manmohan and Gujral to India was part of the two-nation theory and partition. Are you now questioning the very existence of Pakistan …?Recommend

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