Mirwaiz tells Kasuri Kashmir bus essential
NEW DELHI: Pakistan Foreign Minister Khurshid Mahmood Kasuri met Mirwaiz Umar Farooq on Sunday at the residence of the Pakistan high commissioner., following his meeting with Syed Ali Geelani on Saturday.
After the two-hour long meeting, Mirwaiz told reporters he had elaborated on the significance of the Srinagar-Muzaffarabad bus service and had asked Kasuri to stress the opening of this road link, because he felt this would be the greatest confidence building measure (CBM) for Kashmiris. He emphasised that there should be no passport and visa system for Kashmiris travelling on this road.
Mirwaiz also said he had raised the issue of involvement of Kashmiri leaders in India-Pakistan talks and Kasuri had assured him that Pakistan supported the idea and was pursuing it with the Indians.
He also sought support from Pakistani leaders to initiate an intra-Kashmir dialogue simultaneously, saying leaders on both sides of Kashmir needed to meet and discuss their future.
Meanwhile, Kasuri called on Leader of the Opposition LK Advani on Sunday. He is also scheduled to meet Congress President Sonia Gandhi, Indian Railway Minister Laloo Prasad Yadav and other leaders of allied and opposition parties, though some leaders have not confirmed their availability.
Earlier on Saturday, Kasure met Left party leaders Harkishan Singh Surjeet, AB Bardhan and Abani Roy and invited them to visit Pakistan. Pakistan High Commission sources said the leaders accepted the invitation and were likely to visit Pakistan this November.
Before walking into the meeting room at the Hyderabad House with his Indian counterpart K Natwar Singh, Kasuri said friendly cordial relations between the two neighbours were in the interest of both the countries. “I have come with a positive frame of mind. We will review progress on all items of the Composite Dialogue Process,” he told reporters. Kasuri and Singh walked hand in hand as they posed for photographers. Kasuri said Islamabad was ready to resolve all issues. “We are not unifocal,” Kasuri said hours after India objected to his statement in Islamabad stressing the involvement of Kashmiris in the dialogue process. “We are ready to understand and resolve all issues, but there are some problems which cannot be ignored,” he said. Iftikhar Gilani