Sultan accuses govt of turning LoC into permanent border
2 November 2007
The News International
Islamabad: The President of Peoples Muslim League, Azad Kashmir, Barrister Sultan Mehmood, on Friday claimed that the government had hinted at making the Line of Control (LoC) a permanent border. 'Foreign Minister Khurshid Mehmood Kasuri had revealed this to Kashmiri leaders during a recent briefing,' former prime minister of Azad Kashmir said while addressing a news conference. The foreign minister, he said, had given the indication of making the LoC a permanent border to resolve the long-standing Kashmir problem during his recent briefing for Kashmiri leaders. The PMLAK leader admitted that the peace process between Pakistan and India was deadlocked, but insisted that both sides had agreed in principle to resolve the issue. 'Pakistan and India are about to sign a document to turn the LoC into a permanent border,' he claimed. However, he made it clear that no solution without the participation and consent of the Kashmiris would be acceptable, as they were the main party to the dispute. He reiterated that the Kashmiris should be included in the dialogue process. The PMLAK president opposed the shifting of the capital of Azad Kashmir from Muzaffarabad, alleging it was a conspiracy to divide Kashmir. 'Kashmiris will resist such a ploy tooth and nail,' he declared. About the rehabilitation of the victims of the massive earthquake, he charged that due to enormous corruption, the victims of natural calamity were still confronted with unending difficulties. Meanwhile, the Foreign Office on Friday rejected the apprehensions of former AJK prime minister Barrister Sultan Mehmood Chaudhry that Pakistan and India had come close to some kind of agreement to divide Kashmir by converting the LoC into an international border. Commenting on the statement of Barrister Sultan Chaudhry, a foreign office spokesman Muhammad Sadiq said: 'This is far removed from the status of discussion on Kashmir, including the discussion that has taken place in the last two years.' The spokesman said: 'Unfortunately, Barrister Sultan Mehmood has not presented the correct picture.'