Kashmiri leaders have faith in Indo-Pak dialogue
31 August 2004
The Daily Times
Islamabad: The top leadership of Azad Jammu and Kashmir and Pakistan-based All Parties Hurriyat Conference (APHC) have expressed support for the ongoing dialogue between India and Pakistan and urged that the talks should continue until the resolution of the Kashmir dispute.The Kashmiri leaders met Ambassador at Large Khurshid Mahmood Kasuri on Tuesday. Mr Kasuri briefed them about the dialogue process with India. They reposed faith in Pakistan's effort to resolve the Kashmir dispute and in the forthcoming talks between foreign ministers from India and Pakistan.Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) President Sardar Mohammad Anwar Khan, Prime Minister Sardar Sikandar Hayat Khan, former AJK president Sardar Abdul Qayyum, Sardar Khalid Ibrahim Khan, Sardar Atiq, APHC Convenor Muhammad Farooq Rehmani and Kashmir Committee Chairman Hamid Nasir Chattha attended the meeting. 'The Kashmiri leadership supported the composite dialogue between the two countries but noted that the talks should not be held at the expense of Kashmir,' Mr Qayyum told Daily Times on the phone.He said that the participants of the meeting pointed out that Kashmiris were a party to the dispute between India and Pakistan and therefore should be engaged in dialogue as soon as possible. 'The resolution of the dispute is not possible without the involvement of Kashmiris,' he said. 'Kashmiris will not accept any resolution if they are not made part of the dialogue process.'I am satisfied with Pakistan's effort to resolve the dispute,' Mr Rehmani told Daily Times after the meeting.Mr Kasuri is likely to hold talks with held Kashmir-based APHC leaders Syed Ali Geelani, Yasin Malik and Shabbir Shah in New Delhi before meeting his Indian counterpart. Mr Kasuri told the meeting that APHC leaders had already been invited for a meeting.'Mr Kasuri told the Kashmiri leaders that Pakistan looked forward to engaging India in meaningful talks to find a just and long-lasting resolution of the Kashmir dispute.' Foreign Office spokesman Masood Khan quoted Mr Kasuri as saying.Mr Kasuri hoped that the composite dialogue process would be result-oriented. He said it was vital that Kashmiris benefited from talks between India and Pakistan because they were a major stakeholder in the dispute.Mr Kasuri said that durable peace in South Asia could only be achieved by resolving the Kashmir dispute according to the wishes of Kashmiris. He said that the international community had a moral, political and legal obligation to ensure that the dispute was resolved in accordance with the aspirations of the people of Kashmir.