Kashmir a 'hot spot', says Obama envoy

17 January 2009
The Nation


Lahore: AN indication of how the incoming Barrack Obama Administration looks at Jammu and Kashmir was available when the US Ambassador-designate to the United Nations, Susan Rice, identified Kashmir as one of the 'hot spots' and bracketed it with conflict-torn regions, including the Balkans and Golan Heights, reports an Indian TV channel Times Now.The reference to Kashmir came as passing mention during Susan Rice's testimony before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, which held a nomination hearing for her on Friday. “From the Balkans to East Timor, from Liberia to Kashmir, from Cyprus to the Golan Heights, the UN has, for more than six decades, played a critical role in forestalling renewed fighting, helping to resolve conflict and repair war-torn countries, providing humanitarian aid, organising elections, and responding to threats to international peace and security,” Susan Rice said. Susan Rice, former Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs in the Clinton Administration, was foreign policy adviser to Barack Obama during his election campaign. After Obama won the November 4 presidential polls, he nominated Susan Rice for US Ambassador to the UN, with Cabinet rank. In the past also Susan has identified Kashmir as one of the conflict zones of the world. In an article published in the Fall 2005 issue of the McGill International Review, Susan then as the Senior Fellow in the Foreign Policy Studies Programme at the Brookings Institution, wrote: “Al-Qaeda appears to be recruiting and readying future generations of jihadis in many of the world’s conflict zones from Kashmir to Chechnya and Iraq.”