December 2006 News

Hurriyat supports Musharraf's action plan on Kashmir

2 December 2006
The Hindu
Shujaat Bukhari

Srinagar: Two days after its offer for a dialogue on self-governance, the moderate faction of the All Parties Hurriyat Conference (APHC) on Saturday extended its support to Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf's 'line of action' on Kashmir. At a day-long convention here, Hurriyat chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq said that after assessing the situation in the changing world scenario 'our party has changed its strategy.' But, he said the Hurriyat had not changed its stand on the resolution of the Kashmir problem. 'There is absolutely no shift in our stand as we want the resolution of the issue in accordance with the aspirations of the people of Jammu and Kashmir,' he said. The Mirwaiz said the Hurriyat supported Gen. Musharraf's proposal, which encompasses self-governance, demilitarisation and a joint mechanism. 'This is in the best interests of Kashmir and is realistic,' he said. The mainstream political parties were creating confusion among the people that 'internal autonomy, self-rule and self-governance were the same and that the Hurriyat had no agenda left.' He called upon them to depart from their traditional stands to find an amicable solution to the Kashmir issue. He said China also wanted to play a role in resolving the issue. He asked New Delhi to not treat the Kashmir issue as an internal problem. 'They talk about devolution of powers which is not the subject matter at all.' The Mirwaiz hoped that the proposed Pakistan visit by Hurriyat leaders would further the dialogue process. On Thursday, Hurriyat's former chairman Abdul Gani Butt had said the concept of self-rule needed to be debated by the people on both sides of the Line of Control. After the general council meeting, he told journalists that the concept had multiple connotations. 'That is why we want a debate and a broader consensus.'


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