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J&K CM happy, Hurriyat divided on Musharraf's offer on UN resolutions

Mukhtar Ahmad in Srinagar | December 19, 2003 16:54 IST

Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed on Friday welcomed President Gen Pervez Musharraf's statement that Pakistan will not press for implementation of United Nations resolution on the Kashmir issue saying it is a very significant development, which would boost the ongoing Indo-Pak peace process.

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However, Hurriyat chairman Moulvi Abbas Ansari struck a discordant note. "Neither India or Pakistan has the locus standi to decide the Kashmir issue on its own and this includes the fate of the UN Security Council resolutions on Kashmir. It is only Kashmiris who can allow the resolutions to lapse," he said.

Ansari, who heads the faction open to a dialogue with the Centre, told rediff.com in Srinagar said, the people of Kashmir remained "central to the resolution of the dispute and any acceptable solution would have to emanate through a dialogue with Kashmiris."

Speaking to rediff.com on phone from his Sopore residence, Ansari's predecessor Professor Abdul Gani Bhat said, "Developments are shaping so fast that we cannot keep pace with." He was reluctant to say anything else on the issue but added, "2004 could see breathtaking developments of far-reaching consequences with regard to the Kashmir problem."

Chairman of the breakaway faction of the APHC, Syed Ali Shah Geelani who advocates the total merger of the state with Pakistan, however, says, "There is no deviation in the Pakistan stand on Kashmir."

Gen Musharraf's statement is "in line with the aspirations of those struggling to end the Indian occupation in Kashmir. The Pakistani president has made a good move with just a few days left for the forthcoming SAARC summit in Islamabad. The ball is now in India's court," he said.

"There is a clear provision in the APHC constitution for tripartite talks involving India, Pakistan and the people of Kashmir if there is no agreement on a plebiscite between the parties," he added.

Javed Ahmad Mir, vice-chairman of the pro-independence Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front, said, "Musharraf's statement has vindicated our stand and it is now for India to adopt a more flexible approach on Kashmir."

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