June 2001 News

Summit won"t stop Kashmir fighting: Hizb

7 June 2001
The News International

ISLAMABAD: A top Kashmiri freedom-fighter leader said on Thursday that planned talks between Pakistan's military ruler and India's prime minister won"t stop mujahideen from fighting in the disputed Kashmir."Talks and the fighting can go on side by side," Sayed Salahuddin, chief of Kashmir's largest militant group Hizb-ul Mujahideen, said in an interview in Islamabad. "We won"t silence our guns, and they can keep on talking. ... It happened like this in many other conflicts - from Vietnam to Afghanistan," he said.Salahuddin, who hails from Kashmir's Badgam district, which is held by India, said the Kashmiri militant struggle forced Vajpayee back to the negotiating table. "We are not opposed to talks, but we doubt India's sincerity and seriousness. We are not hopeful about their outcome because India is not allowing Kashmiri leaders to take part," said Salahuddin, who leads the United Jehad Council, an alliance of 15 Kashmiri jihadi groups. "After so many sacrifices, Kashmiris won"t settle for anything less than an end to Indian rule," Salahuddin said.


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