Australia apprehensive over Pak's missile test

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Sydney, Apr 20: Australia has expressed concern over Pakistan's missile test as it may provoke instability in the region. Pakistan had test-fired a nuclear-capable ballistic missile yesterday with a range of 2,000 km. Australian officials had not confirmed the test but were assuming it happened, Foreign Minister Stephen Smith said today.

''Any testing which occurs within that region does have the potential to cause tension or instability,'' The Age quoted him as saying. Mr Smith said nuclear rivals Pakistan and India had in recent years been having good talks about such issues. ''We certainly hope that the dialogue continues,'' he said.

''We of course would prefer that the testing didn't occur but we certainly hope that it doesn't lead to any tension or instability in the region,'' he concluded.


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