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Zardari says Mumbai raid targeted Pakistan's peace efforts with India

Zardari says Mumbai raid targeted Pakistan's peace efforts with India

The Mumbai attacks were aimed at disrupting the fragile Indian-Pakistani peace process and provoking conflict between the neighbors, Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari wrote in a New York Times commentary published yesterday.
"The Mumbai attacks were directed not only at India but also at Pakistan's new democratic government and the peace process with India that we have initiated," Zardari wrote.
"Supporters of authoritarianism in Pakistan and non-state actors with a vested interest in perpetuating conflict do not want change in Pakistan to take root."
He called for redoubling peace efforts and for both countries to work together to fight the threat of terrorism.
"To foil the designs of the terrorists, the two great nations of Pakistan and India, born together from the same revolution and mandate in 1947, must continue to move forward with the peace process."
He said that "reconciliation and rapprochement is the best revenge against the dark forces that are trying to provoke a confrontation between Pakistan and India, and ultimately a clash of civilizations."
Zardari, referring to his wife and former premier Benazir Bhutto who was killed at a campaign rally in December last year, said he understood the pain of the victims' families in Mumbai.
"The terrorist attacks in Mumbai may be a news story for most of the world. For me it is a painful reality of shared experience," he wrote.
"We can identify with India's pain. I am especially empathetic. I feel this pain every time I look into the eyes of my children."
He said the Mumbai rampage was part of a wider threat facing the region, with Pakistan and India facing a common enemy.
"The terrorists who killed my wife are connected by ideology to these enemies of civilization."