‘It was our fault…’: Pakistan violated peace agreement with India in 1999, says former Pak PM Nawaz Sharif

Former Pakistan PM Nawaz Sharif admitted to violating the 1999 Lahore Declaration with India—the agreement aimed to promote peace and stability between the two countries.

Livemint
Updated29 May 2024
FILE - Pakistan's Former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, center, next to his brother Shehbaz Sharif, right, and daughter Maryam Nawaz,  (AP Photo/K.M. Chaudary, file)
FILE - Pakistan’s Former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, center, next to his brother Shehbaz Sharif, right, and daughter Maryam Nawaz, (AP Photo/K.M. Chaudary, file) (AP)

Former Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has admitted that his country “violated” a peace agreement with India in 1999.

This disclosure came as Sharif assumed the Pakistan Muslim League's (Nawaz) presidency, six years after being disqualified by the country's Supreme Court.

“On May 28, 1998, Pakistan carried out five nuclear tests. After that Vajpayee Saheb came here and agreed with us. But we violated that agreement... it was our fault,” Sharif said.

What was the Lahore Declaration?

The agreement referred to by Sharif was the “Lahore Declaration” signed by him and then-Indian Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee on February 21, 1999. The declaration aimed to promote peace and stability between India and Pakistan. 

Here is an excerpt from the peace agreement.

Pakistan and India have agreed that their respective Governments:

1. Shall intensify their efforts to resolve all issues, including the issue of Jammu and Kashmir.

2. Shall refrain from intervention and interference in each other's internal affairs.

Also Read: ‘If they wind down this industry...’: Jaishankar slams Pakistan over terror - What EAM said on neighbouring countries

3. Shall intensify their composite and integrated dialogue process for an early and positive outcome of the agreed bilateral agenda.

4. Shall take immediate steps to reduce the risk of accidental or unauthorised use of nuclear weapons and discuss concepts and doctrines to elaborate measures for confidence building in the nuclear and conventional fields aimed at prevention of conflict.

5. Reaffirm their commitment to the goals and objectives of SAARC and concert their efforts towards realising the SAARC vision for the year 2000 and beyond, with a view to promoting the welfare of the peoples of South Asia and improving their quality of life through accelerated economic growth, social progress, and cultural development.

Also Read: India has thwarted Pakistan's cross-border terrorism plan by not ‘playing that game’: S Jaishankar

6. Reaffirm their condemnation of terrorism in all its forms and manifestations and their determination to combat this menace.

7. Shall promote and protect all human rights and fundamental freedoms.

How did Pakistan violate the Lahore Declaration?

However, shortly after the signing, Pakistani troops infiltrated the Kargil district in Jammu and Kashmir, leading to the Kargil War.

Kargil War

The Kargil War stemmed from Pakistan's infiltration of Pakistani soldiers and militants into Indian-administered territory in the Kargil district of Jammu and Kashmir.

Cross-border terrorism

Pakistan continued to support and facilitate cross-border infiltration of militants into Jammu and Kashmir despite the commitment in the Lahore Declaration to resolve the Kashmir issue through peaceful means. This support for insurgency and terrorism undermined efforts to stabilize the region and exacerbated tensions between the two countries.

Terrorist Attacks

Pakistan-based terrorist groups carried out several attacks on Indian soil, including the 2001 attack on the Indian Parliament and the 2008 Mumbai attacks.

(With inputs from agencies)

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