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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Pakistani Missile Tests Stoke Indian Fury

ISLAMABAD, Pakistan/NEW DELHI, India -- Pakistan conducted its second missile test in as many days Sunday, ignoring calls to abandon a series of launches that has stoked tension with India and increased fears of war between the nuclear-armed rivals.

India has played down the tests as routine but has boosted security to protect vital oil and gas facilities.

In a speech on national television, Indian Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee said the world had to realize there was a limit to India's patience when it came to attacks by militants, who India accuses Pakistan of supporting.

"The world community should understand that there is a limit to India's patience," Vajpayee said. "How can we tolerate terrorist activities in our country and for how long?" he asked.

Vajpayee said India should have responded to the December attack on its parliament immediately. "The day the attack on parliament took place they should have got a response from India," he said. He did not elaborate.

Tension has surged in the wake of a bloody May 14 raid on an Indian army camp in Kashmir. The neighbors have been trading heavy fire on the frontier for more than a week and 16 civilians on both sides were killed in weekend clashes, officials said.

"As part of a series of missile tests currently under way, Pakistan today carried out a successful test fire of its newly developed short-range surface-to-surface ballistic missile Hatf-3 [Ghaznavi]," the Pakistani military said in a statement.

The tests began Saturday with the launch of a medium-range Ghauri missile? capable of firing nuclear warheads at key Indian cities.

Pakistan said earlier the "routine" tests would continue until Tuesday.

The two neighbors have massed one million men on their border since a deadly raid on India's parliament in December that New Delhi blamed on Pakistan-based Muslim militants.

The Pakistani military statement said Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf had sent his congratulations after the Sunday firing. "This was the first test of the Ghaznavi missile, which is capable of carrying warheads accurately up to a range of 290 kilometers. The flight data collected indicated that all design parameters have been successfully validated," it said. Musharraf said Saturday that Pakistan did not want war but was not afraid of it.

French President Jacques Chirac telephoned Vajpayee on Saturday to discuss the tension. Chirac said efforts must be redoubled to dry up the sources of terrorism and to seek a peaceful solution. He telephoned United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan and Musharraf later.

India accuses Pakistan of backing raids by Islamic guerrillas fighting Indian forces in the Muslim-majority Kashmir region. Pakistan says it only offers Kashmiri separatists political support.

India complains that the United States and other countries are too soft on Musharraf, embracing him as an ally in the war on terror against the al-Qaida network while Islamabad supports what India calls "cross-border terrorism."

Vajpayee, speaking Saturday in the northern town of Manali, said New Delhi's patience was running out and he urged world leaders to step up pressure on Pakistan to stop the militants.

While both sides said the missile tests were routine, their timing was a defiant gesture that added to world alarm about what U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell called a very dangerous situation on the subcontinent.