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Security forces may halt operations
in J&K, says Mirwaiz

January 22, 2004 21:18 IST
Last Updated: January 22, 2004 21:30 IST

Security forces may halt all operations in Jammu and Kashmir from early February, former All Parties Hurriyat Conference chairman Mirwaiz Omar Farooq said in New Delhi on Thursday.

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"We expressed our desire that Centre should halt the continued operations against civilians, including cordon and search and other such actions," the Mirwaiz said after the Hurriyat delegation's meeting with Deputy Prime Minister Lal Kishenchand Advani. "A decision is expected during Eid festival in the first week of next month."

According to him, Advani said he would discuss the issue with army and other security agencies.

"When the ceasefire has brought such a relief in the border areas of the state, such a move in the state would definitely bring a great amount of relief to the people in the valley," he said.

Government sources said the Centre might consider steps similar to the Non-Initiation of Combat Operations, under which the security forces would only attack only if they are attacked.

Asked whether their visit to Pakistan was discussed during the meeting, he said, "We made our case that this will only further the peace initiatives for Kashmir. The deputy prime minister was not averse to the idea."

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