Mirwaiz, Geelani Meet Sharif’s Envoy, BJP Furious

NEW DELHI: Leaders from both factions of Hurriyat Conference and JKLF  Sunday met the Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s Foreign Affairs Adviser Sartaj Aziz at Pak High Commission, evoking a strong reaction from right wing BJP.

The meeting between Sharif’s adviser and Kashmiri separatists  raked up a controversy with the BJP openly criticising the meeting and urging the government to stop Aziz from meeting the Kashmiri separatists.

Earlier in three separate meetings with the Kashmiri leaders at the Pakistan High Commission, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, Mohammad Yasin Malik and Syed Ali Geelani, Aziz reaffirmed that Islamabad will continue to support Kashmir morally, diplomatically and politically till its final resolution.

Aziz said that he hopes bilateral relations between India and Pakistan will streamline and trust will be rebuild between the two neighboringcountries. He informed Kashmiri separatist leadership that Pakistan hopes a forward movement in the stalled peace process between the two countries, which according to him is a prerequisite for any forward movement on resolution of Kashmir issue.

Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, chairman Hurriyat Conference (M) said he along with Prof Abdul Ghani Bhat and Bilal Gani Lone informed Aziz about the prevailing situation in Kashmir.

Mirwaiz informed that Pakistani envoy was told by the Hurriyat delegation that a mechanism needs to be evolved wherein Kashmiris would be taken on board to decide their future.

“We said that Hurriyat Conference will support confidence building measures extended by both India and Pakistan to each other but Kashmirspecific measures must be taken so that this problem which is lingering o for the last 65 years is resolved,” he added.

The Hurriyat (M) chairman said that without mincing any words, Aziz was informed that Kashmir issue needs to be resolved keeping thepolitical aspirations of its people into consideration. “Mr Aziz also agreed saying that it is not the question of Kashmiris alone but the resolution of this age old problem is directly related to the future of billions of people across the border is at stake.”

The Hurriyat (M) Chairman said he suggested Aziz that people-to-people contacts across the LoC must be facilitated and impetus must be laidon other cross LoC interactions like easing out admission procedures for students, strengthening the trade and travel relations.

Quoting Aziz, the Mirwaiz said that Pakistan will continue to support Kashmir morally, diplomatically and political till any solution is found to the vexed issue. “We thanked Pakistan for its continuous support to Kashmir cause. On this Mr Aziz said that Kashmir is still a core issue for Pakistan and it wants interactions and a consultativeprocess with Kashmiri leadership to continue in future.”

Briefing about his meeting with Aziz, Mohammad Yasin Malik, chairman Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF) said that he conveyed MrAziz that no readymade solution to Kashmir will be accepted by Kashmiris. “I told him that Kashmir is the world’s biggest human issue which needs immediate attention for its final resolution. I said that Kashmir has lost its four generations and those who are alive in Kashmir are suffering from mental pain and agony.”

Malik said that he also made it clear to Mr Aziz that Kashmir is not a border issue between India and Pakistan which can be settled throughbilateral talks. “Kashmiris must be consulted as a principal party to the dispute and no solution shall be accepted by the people of Kashmir which will be informed to them through radio and television.”

The JKLF chairman said that the advisor to Pakistan Prime minister was also informed about the sufferings of Kashmiri people. “I told him that people are thankful to Pakistan for its moral, political and diplomatic support but the Kashmiris need to be taken on board for deciding their destiny.”

Syed Ali Geelani in his meeting with Aziz has said a unilateral flexibility shown by former Pakistan president Parvez Musharaf and hissubsequent four point formula has caused a huge damage to Kashmir movement. Geelani has informed Aziz: “Pakistan should stick to its stand on Kashmir issue and for Pakistan the resolutions passed by United Nations should be the basis for any solution to Kashmir problem.”

The Hurriyat (G) chairman briefed Aziz about the sacrifices offered by Kashmiri people since last 65 years. “Pakistan and Kashmiri separatistleadership should remain steadfast on their stand till India is compelled to resolve the Kashmir issue,” Geelani told Aziz.

During the meeting, Geelani was accompanied by advocate Mohammad Shafi Reshi and Hurriyat (G) spokesman Ayaz Akbar.

Aziz is travelling to India to attend ASEM Foreign Ministers meet on November 11 and November 12.

He would also be meeting External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid on the sidelines of the ASEM Foreign Ministers’ Meet, where he would discuss the issue of ceasefire violations along the LoC.

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