Sharif Invites Geelani to Pakistan

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SRINAGAR: Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has invited hardline Hurriyat leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani to visit his country.

“Geelani was handed the invitation letter from Sharif by Pakistan high commissioner in India Abdul Basit over a dinner at the latter’s residence at Tilak Marg in Delhi last night (Friday),” a spokesperson of the Geelani-led Hurriyat said on Saturday.

The spokesperson said Sharif termed the Kashmir issue an unfinished agenda of the creation of Pakistan and contended that friendly relations between New Delhi and Islamabad without resolving Kashmir would be nothing but “self deceit”.

“In the letter, Sharif has said Kashmir is not a border dispute but concerns ‘right to self-determination’ of two crore people. He also said Pakistan has made it clear to India that there can be no progress on bilateral ties while ignoring Kashmir issue,” the spokesperson claimed.

Sharif also said that the National Security Advisor-level talks between the two countries could not take place as “India was not ready to talk Kashmir issue”.

“We want good relations with all our neighbours including India but New Delhi’s unrealistic approach has been a big impediment,” the spokesperson quoted the Pakistan Prime Minister having said in the letter.

The spokesperson said Geelani has in principle accepted the invitation to visit Pakistan. He, however, did not give specific date of travel.

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