Trying to reduce us to nothingness

By Dr. Shireen M Mazari
The present rulers have certainly tried to reduce Pakistan to a joke in the eyes of the world. Here we are confronting one of the largest natural disasters of the world, as even the UN has conceded, and our President has been busy frolicking in Europe with his team of loyalists who are giving out lies, half-truths and propaganda – in fact anything to conceal the truth. Take for instance, the claim that the President’s trip to the UK was an official trip. After being asked through an email from a Pakistani journalist, whether this was the case, the British Foreign Office spokesperson, Natasha Khan, responded (August 6th) with this one-liner: “President Zardari is not on an official state visit.”

President Zardari himself claimed that he was in the UK to develop trade links with the international community but ended up having only one official meeting – and that to with PM Cameron, not any trade delegation. As for the Marshall Plan he claims he got the UK to agree to, only he seems to be aware of it as there has been nothing coming out from the British government and apparently all that has happened is that we once again pleaded with the Brits to take up the case of access for Pakistani exports to the EU markets with Brussels.

Meanwhile, costs aside – and those too are substantial given the nightly rate at the London five star hotel the President and his entourage stayed at, plus the costs of the chartered flight to Birmingham, plus the costs of the dozen or so luxury limos that were hired and thousands of pounds paid for the hiring of the International Convention Centre in Birmingham and so on – it is what was said and left unsaid that was truly damaging for Pakistan. The first issue is of course the most critical – the unsubstantiated accusations uttered by UK Prime Minister Cameron in India against Pakistan, and his refusal to retract or even modify them. One had expected that at the very least President Zardari would take this issue up since he not only refused to cancel his trip, but also refused to cancel his meeting with Cameron. Unfortunately, in his meeting with Cameron, no protest was registered. To make matters worse, President Zardari actually seemed to be in agreement with Cameron’s remarks because in an interview given later to The Telegraph (August 7th), he made a reference to rogue spies when talking of the ISI whom he said were a thing of the past. So effectively he was echoing what Cameron had said, but to show how he was making the difference he added that he had full control over the intelligence agencies and only now “everybody is completely accountable!” So if the Pakistan nation or any state institution was expecting a strong defence against the Cameron remarks they were not going to get it from the Presidency! In fact, President Zardari did not even take up the issue of the Pakistani students who were arrested on alleged terrorist charges and then found not to be guilty but were still deported – thereby having their future all but destroyed. Yet, we heard nothing on this count either from President Zardari. If he saw the ISI guilty as charged by Cameron, surely he could have pleaded the cause of these innocent Pakistani youth at least?

It is no wonder, then, that the British political elite can ride roughshod over Pakistan and the British media can go to town ridiculing and lampooning the Pakistani head of state. Even someone who is considered a friend of Pakistan like Baroness Wasti made a strange defence of Prime Minister Cameron’s remarks in an article by declaring that friendship “is meaningless unless you can be honest with each other!” That is true but does honesty demand that you publicly level unsubstantiated allegations against your friend in the territory of the foe of that friend? Where was the mutual respect Wasti talked about in Cameron’s remarks and subsequent reiteration of that position? However, given President Zardari’s absurd remarks about the UK-Pakistan historical relationship – and one only has to go throw the history of Partition to realise this – obviously even Baroness Wasti feels she can pull a fast one on Pakistan while defending her Party leader and Prime Minister!

President Zardari’s tragedy is that no one is Pakistan, save his own loyal band, was in a mood to take the cudgels up in his defence or at least against the manner in which he was treated in the UK. After all, he defied his suffering nation to go on this jaunt at a time when he should have been offering succour and support to his flood-ravaged people. It is our tragedy that our leaders are in no mood to defend Pakistan, its people or its institutions against the negative agendas of external foes posing as friends. In fact, since successive governments have allowed the US to kill our people while violating our sovereignty at will, one can conclude that neither the previous uniformed dispensation nor the present civilian democratic dispensation is prepared to take up the cudgels for the Pakistani nation against the US and the agenda of the Indo-US nexus. As for the UK, it never befriended Pakistan, especially on the issue of Kashmir and if our leaders are not well-versed in our history, they need to get rid of this critical deficit. That is the only way they will finally realise who has truly been Pakistan’s friend in our times of need. Read more of this post

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Zardari Faced Shoe Attack in Birmingham


A demonstrator holds a shoe up to to a manipulated photograph of President Zardari of Pakistan outside of the International Convention Centre in central Birmingham on August 7, 2010 as the Zardari speaks to supporters during a visit to England. President Zardari has faced criticism for leaving Pakistan to promote his son's political campaign while the country faces a national crisis due to severe flooding. AFP PHOTO/Leon Neal

BIRMINGHAM, England — A protestor threw a shoe at President Zardari in protest at his decision to visit UK despite PM Cameron’s insulting comments and the floods crisis in Pakistan. More information to follow on this, including video.

Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari was to attend a rally here Saturday as protesters demonstrated against his presence in Britain during the flooding disaster back home.

Zardari was due to speak at a political event in Birmingham, central England, for Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) members and leading figures in the Pakistani community in Britain.

Hundreds of demonstrators from various standpoints gathered outside the International Convention Centre venue in Britain’s second city, chanting and waving placards.

It comes the day after Zardari held talks with British Prime Minister David Cameron, when the pair agreed to step up their anti-terror cooperation following Cameron’s controversial claims about Pakistani attitudes towards terrorism.

With the flooding disaster affecting up to 15 million people in Pakistan, Zardari has come under fire from some quarters in Pakistan and Britain for continuing with his trip to Europe during the crisis.

Some demonstrators held up shoes to pictures of Zardari, while others held placards reading “1000s dying, president is holidaying”, “Thousands killed, millions homeless, what president is laughing for?” and “Are the Zardaris enjoying England while Pakistan drowns?”.

Mohammed Khalil, a local official from the Tehreek-e-Insaf party headed by former Pakistan cricket captain Imran Khan, was among those protesting against Zardari.

“His own people are dying for food, there’s calamity there,” he told.

“He should be there organising for his own people. Instead he’s here with so many people. The government is paying all the expense for that. That money should be spent on the people of Pakistan, not on himself.”Taji Mustafa, from the Hizb-ut-Tahrir organisation, said Pakistanis were outraged.

“There is no self-respecting leader in the world who in this time of dire national crisis, while people are drowning, he is drowning in enjoyment, he is drowning having lavish dinners in the company of his die-hard supporters,” he said.

Wajid Ali Burkey, a PPP business forums coordinator in Britain, defended Zardari as he went into the event. “In the last 70 years we have not had such a disaster. But I don’t think the president being there or not being there would have made any difference,” he said. The demonstrators “have a right of opinion to believe he should not have come, but I personally believe it is very important.”

The PPP is co-chaired by Zardari and his son Bilawal Bhutto Zardari.

A PPP spokesman had said Bhutto Zardari would attend the Birmingham event and might speak at it but the 21-year-old on Saturday denied the rally was meant to launch his political career as he opened a donation point at the Pakistani High Commission in London.

The Oxford University history graduate vehemently defended his father’s visit to Europe. “He’s doing the best he can and what he thinks is best to help the people of Pakistan” he said.

One protestor threw a shoe at President Zardari during his address to the conventionin in protest at his decision to visit UK, despite PM Cameron’s insulting comments and the floods crisis in Pakistan.

Must see:

– Zardari shoe-hurling game introduced on Internet

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A revolution?

By Marvi Memon

These days there is a lot of talk about revolution and a change of system. I see it as a control-alt-delete button on the keyboard. A clean up action of sorts where a new benchmark of what is acceptable in politics needs to be set up. The constitution is fine. So is parliamentary democracy. The problem is that no one sticks to the system. How does one ensure zero tolerance for wavering from the system? Simple — by ensuring that when there is a wavering from set rules, people are punished according to rules.

There is a common joke going around Islamabad these days: hang a few hundred politicians and this country will be fine. What this seems to suggest is that the politicians are the core problem. I feel that the responsibility lies on the politicians to govern since they are responsible for the fate of millions.

What should one expect from politicians? That they will make good laws and implement them. That they will create an Islamic, social welfare state. That they will rule in an egalitarian way. That if they have clean water to drink themselves, they won’t sleep until they have found a way to provide each Pakistani with clean drinking water too. That if they have access to education and basic health units, they will ensure that each Pakistani has the right to education and health facilities too. And until we don’t give the basic amenities to the poor, we have no business wasting each other’s time politicking.

There is a long list of revolts, rebellions, and revolutions in world history. They happen when people reach the peak of the minimum acceptable level of humiliation and are ready to turn out those responsible for their misery. Read more of this post

Israel Leaves Trail of Lies in Afghanistan

By Gordon Duff

LONDON TIMES RUNS SECOND ISRAELI PROPAGANDA PIECE IN A WEEK

The second time this week, the London Times has run articles submitted by Israeli intelligence, irresponsible, inaccurate and intended to bring chaos.  The first article claimed that US sources had verified Saudi Arabia’s intention to allow Israeli planes to use their territory for an attack on Iran.  The government of Saudi Arabia issued a strong denial in hours.  Today’s Israeli press release, carried as a news article by the London Times is far more sinister but also leaves a trail.  We are putting the London Times in for the Yellow Journalism Award of the Week, something usually reserved for Fox News.

The article itself is what we call a “plant.”  The substance of the times article includes a meeting with an imaginary Taliban commander and a hodge podge of misinformation, outright lies and subterfuge.  What is more important is why the article was written and why such a transparent piece of propaganda is a sign of Israel feeling the upheaval or worldwide scorn after the massacre of human rights activists in the Mediterranean.   The real pressure to cause a rift between NATO and Pakistan, something India and Israel have worked for, has been exacerbated by President Karzai’s attempts to draw close to Pakistan to support his failing regime.  Karzai, educated in India, had, for most of his rule, worked closely with India and, less publicly, Israel, something his people would have hated him even more for, if that were possible.

Continually dogged by accusations of corruption and for surrounding himself with druglords from the minority Northern Alliance, Karzai’s every act has moved Afghanistan into chaos and closer to civil war.  Now that the end is on him and on his friends, India and Israel, he has run to Pakistan for help and Israel has run to the Times to stop him.

The timing of the article, immediately after the Times attempted to divide the Islamic world by claiming Saudi Arabia and Israel were planning an attack on Iran, is, in itself an additional sign of how little the London Times is valued by organizations powerful enough to have it print stories that would humiliate any reputable paper.  It was important for Israel, the close ally of India, to discredit Pakistan and attempt to tie it to the Taliban, an organization that has killed thousands in Pakistan.  No mention is made of these attacks, however.  No mention of Israel and India and their role in arming and training the Taliban as part of a program of surrogate warfare against Pakistan, the world’s only Islamic nuclear state.

The gist of the article is simple:  Pakistan is running the Taliban because Pakistan ran the Taliban during the 1980s, when, frankly, the Taliban didn’t exist.  The article further claims that Pakistan’s ISI, their version of the CIA, is working with President Zardari to organize the Taliban. Read more of this post

Today’s Cartoon:- 4 pillars of democracy!

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This Is How US Agents Sneak Into Pakistan

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For a few hundred dollars, low-paid border guards are allowing entry into Pakistan to spies and agents of multiple foreign intelligence agencies operating in Afghanistan. In this story and video, see how a US lady entered Pakistan through Torkham on Saturday, Mar. 13, 2010, without visa and without the knowledge of Pakistani intelligence officers posted there. This happens in a country that faces terrorism exported by both US-controlled Afghanistan and its Indian ally.

BY SYED FAWAD ALI SHAH:

TORKHAM, Pakistan—Rampant corruption and a weak Pakistani state are helping the entry into Pakistan of spies and terrorists from multiple foreign intelligence agencies operating in Afghanistan. Almost all terror in Pakistan is coming from Afghanistan.

This American woman tried to sneak into Pakistan through Torkham on Afghan border today, Saturday, Mar. 13, 2010, around early afternoon. She was wearing an Afghan woman’s burqa and apparently spoke local dialects. She would have successfully crossed into Pakistan safely hidden among a group of Afghan women but something about her demeanor raised the suspicion of a Pakistani border guard.

However, the border guards, known as Khasadars, made sure that Pakistani intelligence officers posted in the area are not told about this arrest. Torkham is considered a hot station within Kasadar tribal force circles. With salaries that go less than PKR 10,000 per month [less than US$ 130], major checkpoints such as Torkham provide an extra source of income for the Khasadars through bribes from travelers.

The guards kept the woman in a room for about thirty minutes and then let her enter Pakistan in her burqa. She paid the Khasadar guards a handsome amount of money as bribe. According a source in the Khasadar Force who witnessed the whole thing, the woman didn’t panic. She appeared composed and familiar with the ways of the border guards. She knew what to do in such a situation.

Thanks to my contacts in the border force, I was able to make a cell phone video of her passport while the Khasadar chief at the checkpoint talked to her.

Her name on the passport was Zohra Rehmati, which makes her an American from either Iranian or Tajik-Afghan extract.

Over the past four years, a large number of US agents have entered Pakistan through Afghanistan. Several have been arrested in different parts of the country disguised as Afghan men, complete with beards and Turbans and fluent in Pashto, Dari and Urdu. Unfortunately, much of this covert American activity was sanctioned first by the Musharraf government and now by the pro-US Zardari-Haqqani combine in the incumbent government.

Ms. Rehmati, if that is her real name, may or may not be a CIA operative, or one of its private contractors associated with either DynCorp or Xe International. But such lax security in a country that is a target of terrorism, DynCorp managed to create quite a covert network in Pakistan before being busted by Pakistani security last year. DynCorp remains in Pakistan, thanks to backing from both the US Embassy in Islamabad and the pro-US government, despite repeated attempts by the country’s security officials to force the US defense contractor to wrap up its operations here. Xe International, formerly known as Blackwater, also operated in Pakistan until 2005 before being moved to Afghanistan, according to an earlier report in the New York Times. But going by the number of incidents in Pakistan over the past couple of years where US private agents were seen operating in major Pakistani cities, it is safe to say that both contractors continue to quietly operate in Pakistan in one

Private contractors help give CIA the benefit of deniability if an agent is arrested on foreign territory.

CIA has been known to send US citizens of foreign descent to their home countries for espionage.

The most recent example is Roxana Saberi, an Iranian-American who was busted in Tehran carrying sensitive documents handed to her by an informant. Ms. Saberi was sent to Iran posing as a journalist. CIA even managed to get her newspaper accreditation from a major American newspaper. The US government was embarrassed at the arrest because Ms. Saberi was arrested red handed receiving official documents from a contact.

In Pakistan, a State that is falling apart at the seams, with no central figure or department to control the rot, is providing the perfect environment for meddling in the country not only by the United States, UK, India and other established powers based in Afghanistan, but also by a puppet regime like that of Mr. Hamid Karzai and his spymasters, who in eight years are in a good position today to wreak mayhem inside Pakistan while the politicians in Islamabad and the military in Rawaplpindi have little recourse beyond words of appeasement or caution during closed-door meetings with foreign powers in Afghanistan that are never translated into action to reestablish Pakistan’s writ domestically and in the region.

Mr. Shah is an independent journalist based in Peshawar.

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Lahore Suicide Attacks:Indian Proxy War against Pakistan

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By Zaheerul Hassan

On March 13, 2010, two suicidal bombers walked up to Pakistan military vehicles and exploded themselves in densely populated area RA Bazar of Lahore cantt. In these attacks 45 persons included five soldiers killed and more than 120 individuals sustained injures. This is the second attack of on going week.

Earlier on March 8, 2010 Pakistani Intelligence Agency’s “sub-office” in Model Town Lahore was rocked at the time of a suicide attack and killing 15 people and many injured. It is also added here that since January 2010 twenty suicidal attacks have been launched against soldiers and citizens. In the night at about 0830 PM third bomb exploded near Moon Market ,in which many individuals got injured. Out of revealed suicidal attacks, 12 have been carried out against the security forces. President Asif Ali Zardari, Prime Minister Syed Yousaf Raza Gillani and Chief of Army Staff General Ashfaq Pervez Kiyani condemned the Lahore blasts of March 12. They expressed condolences with the families of those who lost their lives in the dastardly terrorist act. The President said the government and people are determined to defeat terrorism and such gruesome acts cannot deter the national spirit is ready to defeat terrorists. It is also mentionable here that last year five attacks were launched in Lahore:

15 October 2009: Terrorists attacked Federal investigation Agency
12 June: a prominent anti-Taliban cleric killed by a suicide bomber at his religious school.
27 May: a car bomb attack on police buildings killed 23 persons.
30 March: Gunmen attacked a police academy, killing eight people
3 March 2009: Gunmen killed six police guards in an ambush of the Sri Lankan cricket team.

The conspicuous increase in volatility has been noticed since after ‘Mumbai attack”. India has started all out proxy war against Pakistan. Her Intelligence agency is using criminal elements of FATA and remote areas of Pakistan for fomenting terrorism. Indian Interior minister P Chidambaram and chief of Army Staff repeatedly threaten Pakistan. In a ceremony held on March 12, 2010 Indian home minister once again alleged Pakistan for their domestic ongoing violence and militancy. He said that any act of terrorism from Pakistani territory against India will be taken as not be tolerant in future. In fact the purpose of such types of statements political and military leadership is to justify Indian covert and open sabotage activities against Pakistan. The statements have to be analyzed keeping in view of the on going war on terror. New Delhi is using criminal and militants to terrorize the determined Pakistani Security Forces and general masses. Pakistan Ambassador at New Delhi Shahid Malik while answering to journalists rejected Chidambaram stance and said that India is involved in spreading terrorism in Balochistan instead of resolving burning issue of Kashmir and water.

Indian Chief OF Army Chief General Deepak Kapoor has also clearly shown her desire of striking Pakistan on November 22, 2009 when he warned that a limited war under a nuclear overhang is still very much a reality at least in the Indian sub-continent. On November 23, 2009 Pakistan Foreign Office Spokes man Abdul Basit asked the world community to take notice of remarks passed by the Indian Army Chief. He also said that India has set the stage and trying to impose a limited war on Pakistan.

In this context, earlier Pakistan Army Chief of Staff General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani has categorically expressed at number of occasions that Indian attack would be responded in full strength while using all types of resources.

Pak investigation agencies have collected the solid proves in the shape of fake Pakistani and American currencies, Indian made armaments, medical equipments and passports. The dossiers composed of evidences regarding Indian involvement in fomenting militancy in Pakistan has been provided to Indian authorities in recently held sectary level negotiations at New Delhi. It is also notable here that the terrorist are also being imparted training in Afghanistan and India for launching and targeting security agencies and important installations. A wave of suicide and bomb attacks across Pakistan has killed more than 3,000 people since 2007.

Hindus extremists are creating problems in Pakistan, Nepal, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh. India is giving the money and weapons to the terrorists in these countries. India wants to destabilize his neighbours. But she should not forget the result of the Russia / Soviet Union. If India did not changed its behavior then soon would be disintegrated into in 27 parts. Though secular India claimed that she is the most religious in tolerance but on ground facts are quite difficult. Muslims, Christens and Sikhs even cannot shake hand with extremist Hindus. India is the only country in which there are always riots, killing of minorities, raping Tamils, Maoists and Kashmiries innocent women. Yearly more than 3000 individuals of minorities are being killed by Hindus extremists. Sikh still crying for justice and cannot forget the incident of Golden Temple in 1984. The killings of Muslims after Babri Masjid Shahdat went to its extreme where more than 3000 Muslims killed in Gujrat in 2002.
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Words of a Lion-Hearted Pakistani Father | True Power of Emaan |

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|Salam-Pakistan| A Message to Pakistani Youth

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This video is dedicated to Pakistani Youth. They have to come forward now to protect their Liberty, their everything, that is Their Pakistan. Their elders had sacrificed for them and now they have to sacrifice for their children. No one from outside will come to make Pakistan stronger and Prosper. Outsiders will only come to destroy Pakistan. It’s time now to wake up, come forward n take the challenge of making Pakistan as one of the Greatest countries of the World-as Quid e Aazam dreamed for it.

Pakistanis should not sit relaxed in their homes and enjoy the looting being done with their beloved country by the corrupt dacoits (Politicians). They have to admit that this country was created after a very hard and a very long struggle and since its creation, it has been protected by giving enormous sacrifices.

Pakistan belongs to Pakistanis, and Pakistanis have right to live and govern Pakistan. Nobody should be allowed to come from outside and hijack Pakistan, because it was made only for PAKISTANIS. Rest of everyone should pack their luggage and go back from where they have come.

We Pakistanis need true and sincere FRIENDS not evil MASTERS !!!!

Long Live Pakistan
Death to its Enemies, whoever they are.

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NSS & Pakistan

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Dr. Shireen M Mazari

President Obama has called a Nuclear Security Summit in Washington in April (12-13) this year and more than 40 heads of state are expected to attend. This is a follow-on from Obama’s Prague speech of April 5 in which he outlined his arms control and nuclear nonproliferation objectives with nuclear terrorism topping the list. Now there is a growing lobby within Washington that sees Obama’s nuclear arms reduction and disarmament pledges as threatening to US long-term interests; and so far Obama has not managed to move substanti-vely on his commitments in this field – as has been the story with him since he began functioning as the US president. In fact, so far his foreign policy in actual actions has not strayed too far from that of his predecessor.

Be that as it may, since the Pakistani president will also be present at this Summit, the country needs to evolve a policy on nuclear security that ensures Pakistan’s interests for the future. One does not expect President Zardari to actually take a strong nationalist position against the Western tide at the Summit, but we can at least highlight what does need to be done and live in hope. A beginning needs to be made by preparing our interpretations of the four main points of the Obama nonproliferation objectives. The environment envisaged is not a UN-type international framework for nuclear security but a US-led framework, with the US firmly in the driving seat. So, the first thing Pakistan needs to build support for the view that any such framework must be within a UN framework and support for this view can be built amongst the developing states, who are critical to the success of this Summit.

Then comes the Obama agenda, beginning with the desire to “lead a global effort” to secure all vulnerable nuclear weapons materials at vulnerable sites within a time frame of four years – Obama’s term in office! Now clearly, Pakistan will be targeted on this count but we need to point to the truly vulnerable sites which actually are primarily in the US. After all, it is from the US that a USAF plane simply took off with live nuclear weapons and no one knew who had authorised it or where it was headed. So there are serious question marks about US command and control and till these are cleared, US nuclear sites need to be under extra international supervision. Also, Pakistan needs to demand at this Summit that all past incidences of “loose nukes” be evaluated and the most vulnerable or accident-prone sites should then be secured. Of course no such incidents have ever cropped up in Pakistan so we should ensure that our nuclear sites do not even come up for discussion – although that will be part of the US agenda.

Then Obama is seeking, according to his Prague speech, new partnerships and new standards to protect sensitive nuclear materials. Well, if Obama is really committed to this objective, the first thing he needs to do is to move out of the nuclear deal with India – the 123 Agreement – since that widens the scope for diversion of nuclear materials for weapons purposes, given the lose safeguards agreements and the freeing of Indian fissile material for the production of more nukes. So far the US has set regressive standards for nuclear material safety through this deal with India and through its continuing proliferation to Israel – so let the US move towards setting new standards that truly ensure nonproliferation. Many states will be prepared to enter into nondiscriminatory partnerships with the US on this count.

Obama also wants to convert coalitions of the willing effectively into international institutions – such as the Proliferation Security Initiative (PSI) and the Global Effort to Combat Nuclear Terrorism. PSI should certainly be open to all states but for Pakistan it is essential to ensure that this does not contravene the Law of the Sea agreements. As for the Global Effort to Combat Nuclear Terrorism, there are already international treaties that exist like the Physical Protection of Nuclear Material Treaty. Why not simply stren-gthen these? Also, the Non Proliferation Treaty (NPT) Review Conference is coming up in May and it is time the NPT was brought in line with the prevailing ground realities where two overt nuclear weapon states are not accommodated as such within the Treaty.
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