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'Musharraf can help achieve demilitarisation of Kashmir'
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My proposals can resolve Kashmir issue: Musharraf

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February 14, 2007 23:06 IST

Praising Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf's efforts in improving bilateral ties, Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad on Thursday said Musharraf could help in achieving demilitarisation in the state.

Azad, winding up a discussion on peace and reconciliation developments in the state, told the Legislative Council that demilitarisation meant withdrawing of forces from internal security duty.

This could be achieved with the help of the Pakistan president, the chief minister said.

Musharraf could translate this into reality by closing down training camps for ultras, and stopping cross-border militancy and flow of money to propagandists in the state, he said.

"Once the Pakistani president takes these steps," peace would return to the state and security forces would automatically return to barracks, Azad said.

Nevertheless, Musharraf's formula or suggestions on Kashmir were debatable, he said.

Praising Musharraf's endeavour to improve bilateral ties, he said the Centre was always for peace and favoured resolving issues through negotiations.

In line with this, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh held two round-table conferences and announced setting up of five working groups to look into all aspects, Azad said.

The groups had already met 13 times and the 14th meeting would be held in Delhi soon, he said.

The recommendations of the groups would be discussed with the prime minister most probably during the interregnum of the Budget session of Parliament, the chief minister said.

Azad invited both the Hurriyat Conference and the National Conference to participate in meetings and conferences aimed at restoring peace in Jammu and Kashmir.

The table was the only medium to settle complex problems, Azad said adding, both the Centre and the state government had provided enough opportunity for this.

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