June 2003 News

New all-party alliance in PoK

22 June 2003
The Hindustan Times

Islamabad: Now, Pakistan-occupied-Kashmir has its own Hurriyat. Formulated exactly on the lines the All Parties Hurriyat Conference (APHC), the one-point agenda of the All Parties National Alliance (APNA), which according to them is a 'holy alliance of nationalists and political groups', is to liberate Kashmir from both India and Pakistan. The Alliance has come out in the open criticising the Pakistan government's policy over the Kashmir issue. They say successive governments in Pakistan have done nothing except making the issue complex while unnecessarily prolonging it. Completely rejecting the 'formulas' proposed by Pakistani governments, including the Chenab formula, the group says the Kashmir issue must be resolved according to wishes and desires of the Kashmiris. 'Chenab formula is not the solution of issue of Kashmir. We reject all such formulas that are against our motherland's integrity and sovereignty. Only Kashmiri nation reserves the right to decide about their motherland without complying to international pressure', said Wajahat Hasan Khan while addressing a press conference here on Saturday, The News reported. Blaming Pakistan for making the Kashmir issue complex irrespective of the desires of the Kashmiri nation, Khan said, 'The leaders in Pakistan administered Kashmir are proposing formulas to divide Kashmir, which has made the situation even more complex. You must be aware that All Parties National Alliance is the only alliance of nationalists and political groups which represents the people of Azad Kashmir, Gilgit and Baltistan. People of occupied Kashmir are also party to this issue including these two regions.' Appealing to both India and Pakistan governments to stop cross-border terrorism, he said, 'We appeal to halt cross firing along the cease fire line killing innocent civilians. State of Jammu and Kashmir is a disputed territory and not part of either India or Pakistan legally speaking. So both countries must withdraw troops from cease fire line and international peacekeeping force must be deployed along the borders of Kashmir. Trading of shelling and firing is against international laws.' It seems APNA has drawn inspiration from APHC, a conglomerate of as many as 28 political parties, operating in Jammu and Kashmir. The demands of the Conference are similar to the extent that Kashmiris must be given a free hand to decide their fate, and both India and Pakistan must desist from interfering into their affairs. As a mark of protest the APHC has successively boycotted electoral process. However, during the last Assembly elections a few of APHC constituents opted to contest.


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