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Pakistan and Afghanistan



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140

No. Date

M126 31 August 1984

PAKI STAN AND AFGHANISTAN

The M i n i s t e r f o r F o r e i g n A f f a i r s / - Mr B i l l H a y d e n , MP,

s a i d t o d a y t h a t t h e A u s t r a l i a n Gover nment condemned t h e r e c e n t

a t t a c k s a g a i n s t P a k i s t a n by Af g h a n a i r c r a f t , a r t i l l e r y and

roc k e t s .

Mr Hayden s a i d t h a t t h e s e a t t a c k s wer e p a r t i c u l a r l y

d i s t u r b i n g i n t h a t t h e y a p p e a r e d t o have been d i r e c t e d a g a i n s t

i n n o c e n t Af gha n r e f u g e e s and P a k i s t a n i c i v i l i a n s , many o f

whom had been k i l l e d . .

Mr Hayden s a i d t h a t t h e r e c e n t s e r i e s o f a t t a c k s began

on 13 August when Af gha n a i r c r a f t bombed a v i l l a g e 20 k i l o m e t r e s

i n s i d e P a k i s t a n . T h e r e was f u r t h e r a e r i a l bombi ng on 14 A u g u s t .

On 19 and 20 A u g u s t , t h e r e wer e r enewed a i r a t t a c k s , and

a r t i l l e r y and m u l t i p l e r o c k e t l a u n c h e r s wer e a l s o u s e d .

Mr Hayden s a i d t h a t t h e a t t a c k s t o o k p l a c e j u s t b e f o r e

t h e r e s u m p t i o n o f t h e U n i t e d N a t i o n s - s p o n s o r e d p r o x i m i t y t a l k s

b e t we e n P a k i s t a n and A f g h a n i s t a n i n Ge n e v a .

The A u s t r a l i a n Gover nment wel comed t h e r e s u m p t i o n o f

t h e s e t a l k s . The Gover nment hoped t h a t t h e y woul d l e a d t o a

s e t t l e m e n t whi ch woul d e n c o u r a g e t h e r e t u r n o f t h e n e a r l y

f o u r m i l l i o n r e f u g e e s i n P a k i s t a n and I r a n t o t h e i r h o m e l a n d .

Mr Hayden s a i d t h a t t h e n e e d l e s s l o s s o f l i f e and

s u f f e r i n g i n t h e r e g i o n woul d o n l y come t o an end whe n, i n

a c c o r d a n c e w i t h s u c c e s s i v e U n i t e d N a t i o n s r e s o l u t i o n s s u p p o r t e d

by A u s t r a l i a , t h e S o v i e t Uni on w i t h d r e w i t s f o r c e s f r o m

A f g h a n i s t a n .