Pakistan renews calls for Kashmir peace deal

June 6, 2009

One of the more intriguing reports about Pakistan under former president Pervez Musharraf was that it had come close to a deal with India on Kashmir. The tentative agreement failed to see the light of day after Musharraf became embroiled in a row over the judiciary which eventually forced him to quit. His successor, President Asif Ali Zardari, then renewed calls for peace with India, stressing the economic gains of increased trade ties and even offering to overturn Pakistan’s nuclear doctrine by offering to commit to a policy of no first use of nuclear weapons. Then came last November’s attack on Mumbai, blamed by India on the Pakistan-based Lashkar-e-Taiba militant group, and all talk of peace was off.  India quashed any suggestion a resolution of the Kashmir dispute would help bring peace to South Asia, insisting that linking Kashmir with the Mumbai attacks would reward acts of terrorism.

Three developments this week pushed Kashmir back onto the agenda.

In the Kashmir Valley itself, protests erupted over the alleged rape and murder of two Kashmiri women.  Residents said the women, aged 17 and 22, were abducted, raped and killed by security forces. Indian authorities denied the killing and said the women drowned in a stream.

In Pakistan, Prime Minister Yusuf Raza Gilani said a resolution of the Kashmir dispute held the key to durable peace in South Asia. Significantly, he said a peaceful solution must be found in line with U.N. resolutions passed in 1948 giving the people of the former kingdom of Jammu and Kashmir the right to vote on whether to join India or Pakistan.  That suggested a hardening of Pakistan’s position compared to the one adopted by Musharraf, who had been willing to set aside the U.N. resolutions if this opened the way to a peace deal. Gilani’s comments were echoed by opposition leader Nawaz Sharif, who was quoted by the Daily Times as saying that there could be no durable peace in South Asia without a peaceful resolution of the Kashmir conflict.

Finally, a Pakistan court ordered the release of Lashkar-e-Taiba founder Hafiz Mohammad Saeed, who had been held under house arrest after the attack on Mumbai. His release was criticised by the United States while India said it raised serious doubts about Pakistan’s willingness to crack down on militant groups operating from inside its borders. Many in India are sceptical about Pakistan’s willingness to crack down on militants, fearing it will target those groups which threaten Pakistan itself, like the Pakistani Taliban in the Swat valley, while leaving Kashmir-oriented groups like the Lashkar-e-Taiba alone.

So what does the future hold for Kashmir?

Some analysts argue that India may well resume talks with Pakistan, if only to do so on its own terms rather than being seen to cave in to American pressure to ease tensions so that Islamabad can concentrate on fighting the Taliban on its western border with Afghanistan. U.S. Under Secretary for Political Affairs William Burns will travel to India on June 10-13, according to the State Department, in what is being seen by Indian media as preparing the ground for an expected visit by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton next month. 

But even if India were to resume peace talks (and media reports suggest opinion is still divided on the subject), there appears to be little room for substantive concessions on Kashmir.  Rather some are arguing that India should capitalise on the participation of Kashmiri voters in state and national elections to try to restore normalcy to the Kashmir Valley, pulling out its troops and leaving the police to maintain order. In the long run, this would allow India to declare the Line of Control dividing Kashmir as the international border – an idea Pakistan has long resisted.

In Pakistan, the latest editorials on the subject suggest there is no single view on how to approach India and the Kashmir dispute. The News International has an op-ed editorial saying that Pakistan should repudiate the tentative deal made by Musharraf as offering far too many concessions to India and betraying the aspirations of the Kashmiri people. 

“The best course would be to return to the pre-Kargil position: political, moral and diplomatic support to the Kashmiri people for a settlement under the UN Security Council resolutions. It would be in consonance with the wishes of the new generation of Kashmiris which has grown up in the shadow of Indian bayonets and is not prepared to accept indefinite Indian occupation of the state. Implicit in this stance would be a rejection of the Kashmir non-paper hammered out during the Musharraf regime. In the diplomatic newspeak popularised by Joe Biden, it is called pressing the reset button,” it says.

In Dawn newspaper, columnist Irfan Husain defends Musharraf’s efforts at peacemaking. “For all his many faults, at least Musharraf did try to break the logjam over Kashmir with a number of out-of-the-box proposals that were either shot down, or allowed to languish unanswered by the Indian government,” he writes.  He calls on India, as the more powerful country, to make a symbolic gesture towards confidence-building by pulling some troops back from the border and for both countries to work together to fight terrorism. “We have seen that a piecemeal approach to fighting terrorism has not worked. By pooling intelligence and by denying jihadis sanctuary and political space, the war can be won.”

And in another column in Dawn, Ayesha Siddiqa argues that Islamabad should open up trade to India, including a transit route to Afghanistan, to improve relations and give India a stake in maintaining stability in Pakistan.

“But then what does one do about the Kashmir issue? More than 60 years of experience tell us that we were not able to solve it militarily and using the issue to withhold solutions for other matters is not likely to work either. At the moment, India has no stakes in solving the issue to Pakistan’s advantage especially when it is investing in its own political system to come up with a solution for the Indian state and the Kashmiri population,” she writes. “Part of the reason why India refuses to be sympathetic to Pakistan’s position is that it has no major stakes here. Transit trade and bilateral trade is one of the formulas for starting a more constructive relationship between the two countries.”

And how does all this look from inside Kashmir itself? Take a look at the home page of the Greater Kashmir newspaper.

(Photo: mourners at funeral of Nisar Ahmad, a protester killed by a tear gas canister; Indian policeman fires tear gas; funeral procession in Srinagar; a charred policeman’s helmet next to a burned effigy/Fayaz Kabli)

Comments

good story,on facts,i like it as kashmirie

Posted by yousuf muhammad | Report as abusive
 

Kashmir is a very beautiful country and there are good people there. I hope for peace in Kashmir, with India and Pakistan.

 

Myra,The Pakistani leaders often deal with Kashmir in a dodgy manner. With every new government – and there’ve been many – Pakistani leaders have switched their national policy on Kashmir based on which direction the wind was flowing. As a result, I’d not read too much in to the public announcements made by Pakistani politicians.There were some significant developments made under the Kashmir non-paper. I believe the future bi-lateral negotiations should be built on past successes. If the the progress made during the Kashmir non-paper is trashed the hope of an agreement will be delayed further.

Posted by Nikhil | Report as abusive
 

You have quoted from a comment in the daily NEWS saying that the deal made by Musharraf should be scrapped. Actually it was not an editorial, as you write, but an op-ed article.

Posted by Salim Ahmad | Report as abusive
 

“The best course would be to return to the pre-Kargil position: political, moral and diplomatic support to the Kashmiri people for a settlement under the UN Security Council resolutions. It would be in consonance with the wishes of the new generation of Kashmiris which has grown up in the shadow of Indian bayonets and is not prepared to accept indefinite Indian occupation of the state.”Since India portrays itself and the world also see it as the biggest democracy in the world. It would be a good start to have a vote on, what the Kashmiris want, NOT under the nozel of the Indian guns please tho. I belive there should be UN personals to monitor the voting and it should take place in whole of Kashmir be it AJK/IOK. Once the world knows what the Kashmiris want… then we can work on how to have a mutual security in Kashmir with the help of Indians n Pakistanis and help train the local police in eventuly providing security.Just a comment on recent news of indian soldiers gang raping two young muslim Kashmiri women and then staging it as they drowned. This is just one of thousands of cases indian brutality and how they treat the Kashmiris and when the Kashmiris protest they label them as terrorists.This recent incident is widely reported in all media but I would like to know what our Indian friends think of it unless they are unaware of the facts. Then they wonder why Kashmiris hate the indian occupation of Kashmir.Kashmiris belive in Independent Kashmir!!! If in doubt have a peblicite as backed by the UN resoulution!!!!

Posted by aLI | Report as abusive
 

@ Salim Ahmad,Fair point and I have corrected it in the post.Myra

Posted by Myra MacDonald | Report as abusive
 

Since all aspects of Kashmir issue has been discussed i would like to add that give right to every human being on the earth to live in peace, have better education and welcome vision.

Posted by Ali Farhan Chaudhry | Report as abusive
 

India is a great democracy and Kashmir is a minor internal problem of India. Mr. Obama must now work for the Liberation of Tibet from the brutal Communist Chinese.

Posted by Mohd Ashraf | Report as abusive
 

Ali,The Kashmiris want the special armed forces act repealed and they want more development in the region. Period! It does not mean independence. Would Pakistan give independence to Balochis or Sindhis because some out-of-work seperatists march on streets and hooligans belt stones? Or, should the UN run an independent poll in NWFP for independence or autonomy because the people there see themselves as Pashtuns first? I guess the answer would be “No”. Independence to Kashmir is an unlikely option. India is not asking for an inch of more land and most likely it’ll not part with one. India’s position on Kashmir has stayed unchanged; convert the LoC from a de facto to a de jure boundary, keep borders porous for trade and travel, and implement autonomy in the region.The recent unfortunate incident has been covered in Indian media. And, if there is truth in the allegations, the security forces will be punished like they were in other cases. The para-military troops are deployed to thwart the cross-border infiltration attempts which occur under the cover fire from Pak army.

Posted by Nikhil | Report as abusive
 

pakistan is just trying to divert attention to the fact that it has been and will harbour and protect terrorists against india.. it is reaping the ill-effects of its actions now.. before it starts on the kashmir issue again, pakistan should get rid of terrorists in its soil and prove that its word are worthy of being trusted.. india is very right in suspending any dialogue until its demands are fulfilled.

Posted by nitya | Report as abusive
 

India is a country of many religions, cultures, customs & languages. It is the classic story of broad consensus. Don’t isolate it on Kashmir because it is the only state in India with Muslim majority, India has more Muslims than Pakistan has. If you apply this disruptive theory, no nation will survive as a nation above the differences of the sections,not even the so called Pakistan.

Posted by Shaju Joseph | Report as abusive
 

i cannot understand , pakistan has created so much terrorism in india and its become so out of control , it start hitting itself in pakistan. why pakistan has only one job to do india, india, india. he just try to cover the real menance its terrorism infrastructure, to divert the attention of world from its illthinking.why he is so much bothered about india and offcourse kashmir, where he is not bothered what the hell is going in pakistan itslef.he is just trying to fool the world. pls stop doing this mr pakistan

Posted by altaaf hussain | Report as abusive
 

What is lacking is a desire on India’s part to resolve Kashmir dispute.so no problem, Pakistan must resume ‘political, diplomatic and moral’ support of Kashmir’s.

Posted by Umair | Report as abusive
 

Peace loving, “freedom” loving Kashmiri freedom fighters seek self-determination. Sindhi speaking Hindus were driven out of their motherland where their ancestors had lived for thousands of years.They did not have self-determination.The Pakhtuns under the leadership of frontier Gandhi wanted their own free country, never wanted to be Pakistan, but they were brutally supressed, and in a rigged election annexed into Pakistan.The Indian subcontinent hosts hundreds of ethnicities, speaking 1000 languages and practicing all the religions in God’s earth.There are linguistic ethnic groups- Sindhis, Gujaratis, Bengalis, Maratis, Pathans, Punjabis, Tamil, Telugus, Kashmiris .and so on….the list is long.The only ethnic + linguistic group in the subcontinent that constitutes a separate country is Bangladhesh- born because of genocide of three million Bangladheshis perpetrated by the Pakistan army in 1971.http://www.genocidebangladesh.org/K ashmiri muslims (mainly sunni sect) wanting a separate country seems to have born out of sense of entitlement out of events of partition, UN resolutions, etc.Either that or it is born out of the special racial supremacy some Kahmiri sunnis feel. Hindus, Shia muslims, Buddhists, Sikhs all living in the Indian administered Kashmir are opposed to this separation sought by the Sunni muslims of Kashmir valley.In either case another intolerant country based on religious exclusivity is the last thing the subcontinent needs!!!International community is not interested in another country “Islamic Republic of Kashmir” led by Syed Salahuddin of “United Jihad council” as its supreme leader. That too in the vicinity of Afghanistan and Pakistan. Hilarious. Not going to happen.Terrorists and trouble makers on the payroll of Pakistan kick up trouble at the instructions of their masters across the border. For them it is their livelihood, kicking up trouble and collect money from Pakistan.The priorities are – control of religion based terrorism, as waged by Kashmir “freedom movement” should be completely stopped.Once this is achieved LOC could be liberalized, but this is going to take a long time after terrorism is stopped. Other genuine grievances of Kashmiri muslims if any could be fulfilled without redrawing of India’s current borders. Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir will remain an area where people belonging to all religion can live together. No need to erect new Berlin walls!!!

 

In response to the post comparing the plight of kashmiris with pashtuns demanding a separate land because of their ethnic identity.This notion is an insult to the Thousands of Kashmiris that have been killed by Indian Security Forces since 1947.No The Question of Kashmir will need to be addressed and India cannot go on longer denying Kashmiris their right to Freedom. If India wishes to retain Kashmir and no longer lose any more territory than it must pull back all forces and end all types of hostility towards its neighbour Pakistan with whom the basis had always been the issue of Kashmir. That is India’s only options it mustn’t be lead into a zealous state by any govt as the Land has to be lead by righteousness for it is a blessed piece of our Planet.

Posted by Imran Younis | Report as abusive
 

Myra—This article may be of some interest to you…http://www.rediff.com/freedom/0710jh a.htm(Excerpted from Kashmir 1947, Rival Versions of History, by Prem Shankar Jha, Oxford University Press, 1996,)

Posted by anup | Report as abusive
 

Forget about Kashmir or Pakistan, for that matter.Lets talk about India and its relations with other neighbours. Does India have normal relations with any of its neighbours; Nepal, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Sri Lanka or even Mauritius !! Does anyone remember the tiny Sikkim ?What to talk of 16 insurgencies going on within its own teritories. Out of 500 Districts in India, more than 100 have no government at all and are up in flames.Before India can think of attaining the Worldpower status, which is its rightfull position, it needs to reconcile with its own people which are divided by the menace of cast.Another important step would be to own its own history of the last 1000 years.

Posted by NKO | Report as abusive
 

Very informative post about an important and under-reported issue. Thank you.

 

india should make efforts to bring POK under indian union

Posted by Raging bull | Report as abusive
 

He calls on India, as the more powerful country, to make a symbolic gesture towards confidence-building by pulling some troops back from the border and for both countries to work together to fight terrorism.OH PLEASE!! Do not make me laugh.So India should pull its OWN troops back on its OWN territory (Jammu and Kashmir is part of India)? This would result in allowing Pakistan-backed terrorists to move across the LoC more freely.Why the HELL should India help Pakistan fight the terrorism that Pakistan created and nurtured to attack India in proxy wars?It shows a lack of taking responsibility for what they have done. All I hear and read is that the Taliban are “foreign” (Tajik/Uzbek…etc).

Posted by bulletfish | Report as abusive
 

Myra,The voice of Kashmiris in POK remains unheard. I have not seen an effort on this blog in that direction. Here is a link to Human rights (violations) in POK.http://www.hrw.org/reports/2006/paki stan0906/

Posted by rajeev | Report as abusive
 

Umair says:”What is lacking is a desire on India’s part to resolve Kashmir dispute.so no problem, Pakistan must resume ‘political, diplomatic and moral’ support of Kashmir’s.”That is actually not true, the Indians are afraid if security promises are not met, namely reinging in of all jihadi proxy army camps as instruments of foreign policy, India will be infested with Pakistani’s own home grown militant problem.Therefore Pakistan much demostrate on its Eastern front that it is sincere and willing to provide real security and crush militantism in every form.India also requires that the Pakistani Army , its Gov’t and its educational system, as well as militant madrasas stop preaching institutionalized Hatred of Hindus, India.India also asks that Pakistan demonstrates remorse and repentance at the UN for the Genocidal attrocities it enganged in 1971. The Bengali Holocaust is well documented.

Posted by GW | Report as abusive
 

To all Kashmiri sympathizers,The governemnt of India and its Army have a duty to maintain security for India. Given that militants and terrorists, receive training in Pakistan from the Army/ retired Army officials/ISI/Retired ISI officials or other military related personnel, rogue or not, they originate from Pakistan.These Islamic “non-state actors” who trained in Pakistan, massacred un-armed innocent civilians in Mumbai.The average everyday Indian will not stand for any more of these cowardly attacks at success and democracy.It is therefore no unreasonable to say that if the LOC in Kashmir is loosened, the Indian Army draws down its military presence, that acts like Mumbai will increase in speed, number and intensity.Those who trained, supported and nurtured the Mumbai non-state actors are still at large, ALL the Proxy Army training camps are operating fully, some of them albeit under the guise of “Charities” with Godly names, yet Pakistan wants to discuss peace in Kashmir?We Indians have our dignity too and deserve peace and security as does everyone else.How can the India and the world take Pakistan seriously and believe even a word they say, when all militant activities are continually in a “COLD START” holding pattern, ready to cross the LOC into India, at the right time.Many of these proxy army assets openly demonstrate their desire to re-affirm their brand of militant Islam upon India, you can call it fear mongering or whatever, should India open its LOC, when Pakistan lets these men openly operate? Why should India compromise its territorial integrity and take the brunt of more terrorism like Mumbai or Sikh Separatism, also fueled by Pakistan.If India is going to loosen the LOC for Pakistan’s sake, the culture in Pakistan must shift its mindset from a religious one, to one that recognizes and respects its neighbour, rather than one that feasts on a daily diet of hatred, agression and inhuman acts as a tool for national unity.The world does not seem to understand that India was occupied for hundreds of years under Mughal rule and for hundreds of years under colonial rule and Indians have taken much humiliation, loss, genocide and stealing of their ancestral land. How can India open itself up, in an irresponsible manner and risk repeating history again.Why is India’s right to maintain its 7000 years of history, its people, the diverse cultures, never brought to the forefront?The Kashmir issue goes to the root of basic trust and history has shown that Pakistan, with an incoherent government continually says one thing and does another.When large armies occupy civilian areas for reasons of security, there will always be injustices against people of all kinds, hindus and muslims alike.I ask again, what is the Indian army there for? The answer to that, is Pakistan is always trying to invade and cross the LOC, using whatever means it can.The India army is there as a security deterrent and will remain, until Pakistan’s culture itself changes and modernizes.Privileges must be earned.

Posted by GW | Report as abusive
 

Imran,Independence to Kashmir is a chimera. Mainstream Kashmiris realize it but the generals in Pakistan and their mujahid friends do not. In 2005, Kofi Annan on his trip to South Asia also declared that the UN mandate of 1947-48 in Kashmir is irrelevant now. Post 1947, no part of the British empire or the princely states was offered independence. Similar to the fate of Punjab and Bengal provinces, Kashmir will be officially partitioned and shared on the LoC. No new borders will be drawn. The secret back-channel bi-lateral talks were also alluding towards this solution and the Western experts are not going to tell us something new that is ground breaking. Clearly, any heavy breathing by Kashmiris is not going to give them a different concoction.Sometimes, the obvious can stare us in the face. I wonder if the leaders in Rawalpindi and Islamabad can see it or are they still blinded by their egos?

Posted by Nikhil | Report as abusive
 

On another note, perhaps there are human rights abuses by the Indian army in Kashmir, if there are, they are wrong and those individuals doing the crime should be punished.The question also arises that are those Kashmiri sympathisers in Pakistan rallying truly for human rights or for the human rights of muslims only? Are the human rights of non-muslims any less?Case in point, China has mercilessly slaughtered thousands of innocent Buddhists from Tibet.We never see Pakistani muslims pleading for human rights when it comes to the right of Tibetans? Pakistani’s are complicit, turn a blind eye and often ignore the brutal and slaughterous treatment of Tibetans by China, their all-weather friend.Adding to that, Pakistan often gets so protective about territorial integrity, why then did it give a strategically located part of Kashmir to the Chinese..the answer to that is to give China a regional advantage of some sort against India, in a war.The arguement then becomes why is Pakistan so obsesses about land, when it is willing to give away land to India’s foes..the reason is that at the core of the Pakistani establishment, they continually seek new ways to ascede land from others, using Islamic “Ummah” as an entitlement to claim “freedom” and break away from India.Pakistan’s support of Kashmir has little to do with human rights and has more to do with religio-political gameplanning to expand their brand of Islam through any means necessary, into the Indian subcontinent, using proxy armies, China, non-state actors, whatever it takes. Luckily India has demonstrated its wisdom through non violent means and has not carried out retribution against Pakistan for past misdeeds.If Pakistani’s want to show that they have any moral ground over Kashmir, let alone a legal one, let them also rally for the rights of Buddhists, against the Communist China regime and the rights of Buddhists against the Military Junta in Burma.Human rights are equal for all people of all cultures and all religions. After all, all peoples on this earth are equal in the right to justice, respect and right to live as free people, are they not?

Posted by GW | Report as abusive
 

Myra:Why all of my comment have been awaiting moderation?Thanksrajeev

Posted by rajeev | Report as abusive
 

If Pakistanis want to give ‘political, diplomatic and moral support’ to the Kashmiris in India (& even a 5 yr old knows what that really means), India also has the right to lend ‘political, diplomatic and moral support’ to the Balochs, Pashtuns, Muhajirs & the Sindhis of Pakistan, who can’t wait to gain freedom from the conniving & manipulative Punjabis. It’s a 2 way street & the sooner Pakistan realizes that, the better it’ll be for it’s own good.

Posted by Mortal | Report as abusive
 

Thanks for the web link RajeevSomehow this does not figure in the writings of many kashmir experts.There are other posts on Reuters this week on kashmir.I was looking for it and not able to get hold of it past couple of days.Azad

 

I notice that you have made the correction that the comment from the daily NEWS quoted in your article is from an op-ed, not an editorial. Since you have named the other columnists whom you refer to in your article, I think it would be appropriate also to name the writer (Asif Ezdi) of the NEWS op-ed.

Posted by Salim Ahmad | Report as abusive
 

the world has been so obsessed with the new war on terrorism that these decade long battles have been put on the back burner. its not that the wars stopped or even paused…its that these stories are finally gaining traction once again.and for that i applaud reuters. thank you.

 

Myra,Just to remind people of the history of Kashmir, Maharaja Hari Singh completed negotiations for acceding Jammu and Kashmir to India in exchange for receiving military aid. The agreement which ceded Jammu and Kashmir to India was signed by the Maharaja and Lord Mountbatten.It is therefore legally binding that Kashmir, the Indian portion is legally and integrally a part of India.Those legal agreements cannot be ignored. If they are to be ignored, have we set a new precedence for ignoring past contracts? Does this make Pakistan an illegal state as well then? If it is, does Pakistan not legally belong to India and partition is just a farce as well?People need to be reminded that the Prince Maharaja Hari Singh signed over Kashmir to India for military protection from the Pathans. Mountbattan, Queen Elizabeth II’s blood uncle was a legal witness to this transfer of land ownership and rule.Pakistan must be reminded that it has a duty to observing legal contracts.Religion cannot be a basis to ascede land from others.

Posted by Global Watcher | Report as abusive
 

@Thanks for the web link RajeevSomehow this does not figure in the writings of many kashmir experts.There are other posts on Reuters this week on kashmir.Azad-Azad, you are welcome. As you would have noticed, HRW link ( http://www.hrw.org/reports/2006/pakistan 0906/ )is not a pro-India/anti-Pak or vice-versa propaganda but talks about Kashmiris in Azad kashmir. Some one posted on Reuters a link long time ago about the comparison of Kashmiris in India and Pakistan by a neutral agency; I recall that the take home message was that the Kashmiris in India are much better (I do not have that URL). Why Kashmiris in POK are ignored in these discussions and do not deserve even a cursory mention by the authors (with due respect Myra included) puzzles me. Talking about Kashmiris on both sides of LoC is not comparing SWAT and Sri Lanka, but it is relevant if one is talking about the Kashmir issue. The report by Human Rifhts Watch exposes the contardictions between what Pakistan professes the Kashmiris right to self-determination and the Azad Kashmir’s constitution. By this constitution, any one that does not support Kashmir’s accession to Pakistan is barred from contesting elections.

Posted by rajeev | Report as abusive
 

Some one posted on Reuters a link long time ago about the comparison of Kashmiris in India and Pakistan by a neutral agency; I recall that the take home message was that the Kashmiris in India are much better (I do not have that URL). Why Kashmiris in POK are ignored in these discussions and do not deserve even a cursory mention by the authors…..- Posted by rajeevIt’s quite surprising, as to how the world has turned a blind eye to the events in PoK while being fixated on Indian Kashmir. I have to say, the Pakistani authorities have done a good job of this concealment & the Indian establishment hasn’t by bringing it to the world’s attention.The reality is that while the dynamics of Indian Kashmir have remained virtually untouched by the Indian Govt since 1947, Pakistan has constantly tinkered with it’s Kashmir in the past 61 years. It has systematically included more & more of it’s Kashmir into the Federally administered Northern areas (FANA) & today, the Pakistani Kashmir has been reduced to a narrow strip of land squeezed between Indian Kashmir & Pakistani Punjab. Pakistan has also completely changed the demographics of PoK since 1947 by increasingly settling Punjabis into PoK.I hope Human Rights groups take notice of PoK & India also starts underlining the atrocities & human rights violations being committed in PoK.

Posted by Mortal | Report as abusive
 

The Pakistani position is inflexible and will be rejected outright. Why even bother? You say the other side should have no pre-conditions but then tack on your own. How is that negotiation?Irfan Husain’s suggestion that the Indians pull back their troops is also off-base. While there maybe some merit to the suggestion that India could offer some kind of deal along the international border, it’s highly unlikely much could be done in Kashmir where the Army is engaged in a serious counter-insurgency fight and is attempting to stem the flow of militants from Pakistan. In the end, this kind of pull-back won’t come as a gesture but as part of a negotiation that will require Pakistan to make some concessions as well (ie. stemming the flow of militants).We have a long ways to go before Kashmir becomes like many of the disputed areas of Europe…an EU style solution (soft borders, no exchange of territory) being the only feasible long term solution in the region.

Posted by Keith | Report as abusive
 

@I hope Human Rights groups take notice of PoK & India also starts underlining the atrocities & human rights violations being committed in PoK.- Posted by MortalMortal: Human rights groups HRW.org notice that except the reports are not brought in front by the media. A clear in consistency in Pakistan’s stance on Kashmir and its actions on kashmiris under its control is hard to miss, except if someone wants to. Reuter media can tell us more. Human rights watch group report leaves no doubt what’s going on inside Azad Kashmir.

Posted by rajeev | Report as abusive
 

@RajeevDon’t worry about Azad Kashmir. Life there for Kashmiris is infinitely better than under the boots and guns of Indian Army.Regrettably the Taliban animals have weakened Pakistan due to their severe terrorism, so Pakistan is only doing the minimum these days: issuing statements.

 
 

@RajeevAt least we let international human rights groups in our country, unlike India where they hide all the atrocities India commits in Indian occupied Kashmir.

 

The Jammu and Kashmir, which has been turned into graveyards and garrison, will express its God gifted beauty when dispute over it is resolved in accordance with the aspirations of its people. Black law had made life of people miserable. Withdrawal of Indian troops from Kashmir is important for the peaceful resolution as per the UN resolutions.
http://www.kashmirvoice.org

Posted by Kashmala | Report as abusive
 

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