New York Times

May 24 1971


A Political Solution For East Pakistan Is Urged By Bhutto

By Malcolm W. Browne

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KARACHI, PAKISTAN, May 23.-Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, leader of West Pakistan's majority party, warned today that Pakistan was in danger of disintegration unless a quick political solution was found for the crisis in East Pakistan.

"If the situation in Pakistan continues to deteriorate, and events are moving fast," Mr. Bhutto told a group of newsmen, "we cannot guess what will happen. The economic crisis in Pakistan was alarming even before the events in East Pakistan. The solution is urgent and it can only be found by the leaders and representatives of the people."

Mr. Bhutto leads the Socialist-oriented Pakistan People's party in West Pakistan, which won 88 seats in the election for a National Assembly last Dec. 7. Pakistan's military leaders never convened the assembly because negotiations over sharing of power between the Pakistan People's party and East Pakistan's dominant party, the Awami League, broke down.

On March 25, the army moved into East Pakistan to crush the Bengali separatist movement. The Awami League, which had won 167 seats, was banned and its leader, Sheik Mujibur Rahman, was imprisoned on charges of treason. "To insist here that the elected representatives of the people are power hungry in wanting to assume office is like calling President Nixon power hungry for wanting to occupy the White House after he was elected," Mr. Bhutto said.


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