The World: The Prisoners at Last Start for Home

The tiny outpost of Wagah on the border between India and Pakistan had never looked so festive. Beneath red, blue and yellow tents, a makeshift reception center had been set up, and Persian carpets were spread over the ground before the two white metal gates at the border. Then, while a pipe band skirled The Hundred Pipers and onlookers showered them with rose petals, the first of 90,000 Pakistani prisoners, held in India since the 1971 war, stepped across the border to freedom.

India released civilian internees first, as well as the aged and sick. Among them were many women and children,...

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