‘It is a conflict between two states’
September 21, 1971
BANGLADESH WANTS INDEPENDENCE AND NOTHING ELSE: FATEH
Abul Fateh, one of the principal delegates of Bangladesh to the UN, told a news conference in New Delhi today that nothing short of independence would satisfy the people of Bangladesh. "Our purpose is to make a massive effort to present our case to the world. This is in addition to our military measure to free our country from Pakistan," he added.
He pointed out that when the conflict started in March it took the form of genocide by an ethnic minority against the majority. Hence, it was not an internal issue. The international convention on genocide also gives it the colour of an international issue.
"This is the way we view it," Fateh said. "It is a conflict between two states."
BHUTTO'S DOUBTS OVER 'RESTORATION OF DEMOCRACY'
Pakistan People's Party Chairman ZA Bhutto today voiced his feeling that chances of restoration of parliamentary government in the country were slim if transfer of power to elected representatives was not implemented by the end of December.
He made the assertion when asked to comment on the revised timetable which delayed by-elections to the National Assembly from East Pakistan by two weeks. He insisted that the National Assembly must meet before the end of the year. He said the situation prevalent in East Pakistan should not be allowed to delay the elections.
"If elections can be held in Vietnam, they can be held in East Pakistan," he said.
Meanwhile, Pakistan Democratic Party President Nurul Amin had expressed the view that power should be transferred to civilian hands when the National Assembly had been fully constituted and there should not be "any transfer by instalment".
Speaking at a reception in Lahore yesterday, he said time was not yet ripe for the transfer of power in the true sense because of "peculiar circumstances" prevailing in East Pakistan.
POPE EXPRESSES SYMPATHY
Pope Paul expressed his sympathy for the "millions of refugees pouring into India" and said the Vatican would help alleviate the sufferings of those unfortunate and helpless people.
ON THE WAR FRONT
In the Kushtia-Jashore-Khulna sector, Mukti Bahini encountered Pakistani troops in Tentuabaria and killed three Pakistani soldiers and injured five.
Mukti Bahini today discharged two mines towards Sapta Dinga, an oil tanker belonging to Burma Eastern, which anchored at the Pashur river for refuelling on her way to Chittagong. The mines hit the oil tanker, and it sank in the river. The guerrillas subsequently discharged two more mines towards Pakistani ship Imtiaz Baksh. The ship was badly damaged, and the barge Liaquat containing 6,784 bags of government wheat sank.
Shamsuddoza Sajen is a journalist and researcher. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org