Nawaz-Singh handshake: Kashmiris pin hope on NY meeting

Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif. PHOTO: AFP/FILE

Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif. PHOTO: AFP/FILE

THE EXPRESS TRIBUNE, MUZAFFARABAD, 01st OCTOBER 2013: 

The Kashmiri leadership across the Line of Control (LoC) has pinned hope on the proposed meeting between the prime ministers of Pakistan and India, saying both the leaders should honour the wishes of the people of Jammu and Kashmir. 

Talking to The Express Tribune, Azad Jammu and Kashmir Acting Prime Minister Chaudhry Muhammad Yaseen said they hoped both the prime ministers would break the ice to give a chance to peace in the region.

“We do not expect a major breakthrough from the meeting; however, it will help  to resume the dialogue process between the two countries to settle all outstanding issues including the core issue of Jammu and Kashmir,” Yaseen said.

Azad Kashmir Information Minister Syed Bazil Ali Naqvi hailed Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s speech in United Nations General Assembly and said the meeting between Nawaz Sharif and Dr Manmohan Singh was vital to put both the countries on the track of prosperity.

“Both leaders should give priority to the settlement of Kashmir dispute as nobody can guarantee the regional peace without the final resolution of this issue,” Bazil Naqvi said.

The Azad Kashmir Legislative Assembly’s former speaker Shah Ghulam Qadir said the meeting between the two elected prime ministers would help to reduce the trust deficit between the two nuclear countries.

All Jammu and Kashmir Muslim Conference (AJKMC) President Sardar Attique Ahmad Khan has also welcomed the meeting between Indian premier and his Pakistani counterpart. He urged both the leaders to make a history by settling all outstanding issues including Jammu and Kashmir dispute for the regional stability.

The AJK Jamaat-e-Islami Amir Abdur Rashid Turabi, welcoming the meeting between the two prime ministers, said: “All such meetings would be fruitless unless a proper mechanism was put in place to bring the Kashmir dispute on top of the agenda.”

Talking to The Express Tribune, All Parties Hurriyat Conference Geelani  (APHC-G) chairman Syed Ali Shah Geelani hailed the statement of Prime Minister of Nawaz Sharif on Kashmir in UN General Assembly.

“After a long time, we the people in Srinagar are happy with the statement of Nawaz Sharif that Kashmir dispute must be resolved under UN resolutions and such statement is obviously near to our heart and a source of encouragement for the oppressed people of held Kashmir,” said the elderly leader.

He said he was praying for the success of Nawaz-Manmohan meeting.  However, he reminded, India did not have a good track record of dialogue process with Pakistan.

All Parties Hurriyat Conference-Mirwaiz (APHC-M) Chairman Mirwiaz Umar Farooq said the meeting between Manmohan and Nawaz was a good initiative.

“Despite the Indian strategy to buy time while engaging Islamabad through talks, we are optimistic with the results of the meeting between the two premiers,” Farooq said.

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