March 2001 News

Hurriyat will not mediate in India, Pak talks: Advani

7 March 2001
The Asian Age

New Delhi: The government on Wednesday ruled out the possibility of any kind of mediatory role for the All Parties Hurriyat Conference between Indian and Pakistan. Replying to the members in the Rajya Sabha during Question Hour, Union home minister L.K. Advani observed that the Hurriyat Conference was trying to adopt a “self-assumed” role of mediator between India and Pakistan. Mr Advani made it categorically clear that the “Hurriyat would not be used as a mediator for talks between India and Pakistan and, if any talks were to take place, these would be directly between the two countries.” Replying to supplementaries, the Union home minister said the Hurriyat leaders were “not talking in one voice and those of them who had passports were free to go to Pakistan.” Mr Advani said the government was ready to hold talks with various groups in Jammu and Kashmir, including the Hurriyat Conference. He said the Hurriyat Conference leaders could speak to any group they wanted to. “But if they try to assume the role of the representatives of the government of India, we are not ready to accept that,” the Union home minister said.


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