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Indian PM Wants 'Normalized' Relations with Pakistan


India's Prime Minister Manmohan Singh says he wants "normalized" relations with Pakistan, but that Islamabad must stop allowing its territory to be used for terrorist activities against India. Mr. Singh made the statement during an election rally in Indian Kashmir, the Muslim-majority region that has been a focus of tensions with Islamabad.

Prime Minister Singh, who flew to Kashmir early Sunday after meeting British Prime Minister Gordon Brown in New Delhi, said relations with Pakistan cannot be improved unless Pakistan stops allowing its territory to be used for terrorist activities against India.

Mr. Singh says India's desire for normalized relations should not be taken as weakness.

Mr. Singh also commented on India's dispute with Pakistan over the divided region of Kashmir. He said that borders cannot be redrawn in Kashmir, but only softened.

Kashmiri separatists, have called for a boycott of the elections, saying they will strengthen India's hold on the Muslim-majority region, and launched a strike in the region Sunday to protest the prime minister's visit.

Anti India sentiment runs deep in Kashmir where an insurgency broke out in 1989.

A staggered seven phase election process is under way in Indian-administered Kashmir. An unprecedented number of people have voted in the first five phases, surprising Kashmir analysts.

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