ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Azad Jammu and Kashmir Sardar Attique Ahmed Khan has said that the freedom movement in occupied Kashmir will continue adding that the peace initiatives and ceasefire on the Line of Control have resulted in reduced in violence. Talking to a private TV channel, he said that there are only two options for the solution of the Kashmir issue: one, to resolve it in the battlefield and second, to settle it on the negotiating table.
“We fought three wars, but wars further aggravated the miseries of the Kashmiri people and the issue remained unresolved. We are firm on our stance on the issue, but we have changed the strategy to resolve the issue.” President Pervez Musharraf took initiatives on the issue despite criticism from across the country, but his peace initiatives with India earned appreciations from the entire international community, he added.
“These peace initiatives have resulted in the Bus Service, opening of five routes with India and exchange of the visits of the Kahmiri people from the divided parts of Kashmir. India got ready to hold talks on Kashmir and the Kashmiri leadership from both the sides of the LoC sat on the negotiating table.” He rejected the notion that the freedom struggle in the held Kashmir has either weakened or resistance against the occupying forces has reduced as the number of causalities in 2007 was much less then that of 2001.
“We do not claim that we have liberated Kashmir but the entire world has acknowledged that we have opted the most appropriate method for the solution of the Kashmir issue; i.e. dialogue. I am of the view that the issue of Kashmir is a flash point among three nuclear stated and the biggest issue on the UN charter the World War II. The international community thus can’t ignore it.”
Pakistan, India, Kashmiris and international signatories of the Kashmir resolution in the Untied Nations are the stakeholders of the Kashmir issue, Attique said.“We have to realize that we can’t at once change the sixty years old animosity between the people of Pakistan and India. Although we did not progress fast on the confidence building measures, but whatever the measures were taken have resulted positively.”
To a question about difference among Kashmiris, he said that difference of opinion exists among the leadership of the held Kashmir, but the leaders including Mir Waiz Umer Farooq, Omer Abdullah and even Mehbooba Mufti are unanimously calling for the end of human rights violation in the held Kashmir.
“They are also unanimous on the point of right of self-determination, right of decision for Kashmiris and demilitarization of Kashmir. They are united on basic points, but they have different political agendas for their own organizations.”President Pervez Musharraf by sheer force of his political wisdom forced the Indian leadership to withdraw its decision of dissociating from peace process and brought them back to the negotiations table on Havana conference, he said.
“Now composite dialogue will resume in October. Our compromise to Pakistan is unconditional and above personal interests. Secondly we can’t compromise on our commitment to the freedom movement. India has also been reciprocating Pakistan by taking confidence building measures without making announcements for them as Indian government can’t make public its actions towards resolution of the Kashmir issue. I think that should grant Kashmiris their just right of self-determination. I demand of Pakistan and India to assure the international community that they will declare Kashmir as nuclear free zone. I think a credible leadership like President Pervez Musharraf does exist so they should be utilized for bringing peace and stability in the region.” He expressed the optimism that coming generation of Kashmiris will be free and prosperous if the ongoing peace process continues.-SANA