December 2006 News

International Conference On Kashmir Next Year In UK

22 December 2006
Associated Press of Pakistan

London: People's Muslim League plans to organise an international conference on Kashmir in United Kingdom next year which will discuss all the aspects of the issues relating to the troubled region. This was stated here on Thursday by the former Azad Jammu and Kashmir Prime Minister and President, People's Muslim League, Barrister Sultan Mahmood Chaudhry at a news conference. He said Kashmiri leadership from both sides of the Line of Control would also be invited for the conference which has been scheduled for February 4 and 5. The conference, he said, would also hold detailed a discussion on Baroness Emma Nicholson's draft report on Kashmir, which has been prepared for the European Union Foreign Relations Committee and due to be approved in March. Castigating the draft report, Barrister Chaudhry said it includes a 'distorted version' of the ground realities obtaining in the Indian Occupied Kashmir and also contains lot of allegations regarding Azad Kashmir. He said it must be noted that a political Government was functioning in Azad Kashmir on October 12, 1999, and it was not disturbed by the change of power in Pakistan. He gave a resume of his five-nation European tour which took him to Germany, Belgium, France, the Netherlands and UK and said during his discussion with concerned officials in these countries as well as with the Kashmiri community, he brought to fore the possible implications about Ms.Nicholson's report and the need for drastic changes in it. Barrister Chaudhry said the report has failed to mention the state terrorism unleashed by the Indian troops in the Occupied Kashmir and the gross human right violations committed by them. The Kashmir issue, he asserted, was about the right to self-determination and not about the water resources as Ms.Nicholson has mentioned in her report. He said his party was preparing its own set of proposed amendments which would be released before the end of the current year. He also declared that UN resolutions on Kashmir were still valid and a solution could be found through mediation by the World body. However, he said several suggestions have recently been proposed and there was no harm in studying them closely by showing flexibity. But he maintained that apart from Pakistan and India, the Kashmiri leadership was also a party to the issue. The former AJK premier called for intra-Kashmir dialogue to iron out differences and evolve consensus on the issue for a lasting settlement. His party, he added, was opposed to the division of Kashmir.


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