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President Musharraf's statement and dispute of Kashmir

19 December, 2003

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President Musharraf the other day gave out a strong statement on the dispute of occupied Kashmir during an exclusive interview with Reuters. Mr. President said that Pakistan is ready to put aside its demand for a referendum guranteed by U.N. in the disputed territory of Kashmir.


Meanwhile, spokesman of Foreign Office, Masud Khan said, President Musharraf's interview on Kashmir was reported and quoted out of context as he did not state that the resolution of the issue should not be in accordance with the UN resolution passed, fifty years back. Mr. Khan said that the Kashmir issue could only be resolved, as the president said, by showing flexibility, from both sides, not unilaterally.

Should Pakistan put aside the U.N. Resolution while talking to India over the dispute of Kashmir ?


Is peace possible in the subcontinent without resolution of Kashmir ?


Has the statement on Kashmir of President Musharraf, quoted out of context by media?

Reader Comments:

no change

We should not change our stand. It would be suicidal.

mir tabassum mairaj, Pakistan - 19 December, 2003

Yes, never

I think we must realize that the western and India media has never been on our side because of their bias approach on the issue of Kashmir. We can never trust BBC and CNN to take our view piont when they are guaranteed millions of dollars of commercial time by Indian Govt.

Therefore it's vital for our leaders to think 100 times before giving out any statement in front of western media. The result is obvious, we are absolutely taking Musharraf's comments out of the context of real issue that both sides have to show flexibility. But yes, if Pakistan is willing to put aside U.N. resolutions, that only goes on the show our sincere intentions in resolving the issue through peace and dialogue.

No one is here selling out anything on Kashmir, it's not that easy, as the President said himself, "No Sir, we will never forget Kashmir."


Agha, Pakistan - 19 December, 2003

Beyond stated positions

1) UN Resolutions are vague, and even the UN is not interested in them. Kofi Anan said right in our face that bilateralism is the only approach that will work. Even otherwise when we have settled our borders in Kashmir with China, merged Gilgit and Baltistan, signed Indus Basin treaty with India on three rivers flowing out from Kashmir, may I ask what is left in the resolutions and even in Kashmir solution.

2)Kashmir problem now is a state of mind, between two states, India and Pakistan, it does not exist since long. All we have to do is to accept realities and work for peace. However between the Indians and the Kashmiris on their side there was an agreement that Kashmir will enjoy the special staus. India will have control only over communication and defence and in all other matter the state will be independent. In my opnion unless India fulfills this commitment, peace within India and valley of Kashmir may not be achieved.
3) Musharraf said what he has been saying so often between the lines. This time he appeared a bit bold; and that is all.

For all those who are not well conservant with the happennings in Kashmir, I may humbly submit that all the parties involved have deviated from their stated positions.
China claimed that entire Northern Kashmir as its part.
Now it is satisfied with 20% of Kashmir. India claims that on the basis of Instrument of Acession entire Kashmir belongs to it, but subtly it stresses on LoC to be made permanent borders. And about Pakistan I have already written above. Similary Kashmiris of valley wanted accession with Pakistan a few decdaes ago; now they have changed and they are demanding independence.

Muhammad Ahsan Yatu, Pakistan - 19 December, 2003

1) 20 and 3)

1)yes pak should put aside us resolution.
2)no peace is not possible in subcontinent with out kashmir resolution.
3)yes

farooq khan, Pakistan - 19 December, 2003

Kashmir and the Regional Powerplay

Riyadh: Friday, December 19, 2003

Salaam. A very fine and pleasant day to you all.

Here are my brief comments, and replies, to your questions:


1. Should Pakistan put aside the U.N. Resolution while talking to India over the dispute of Kashmir ?

NO ! This is the only legal legitimacy, that Pakistan has over India. However, Pakistan can use this stand as a "shield", and not drop it until some other enforceable mechanism is agreed to. India will NOT maintain any of its changed positions, until an International Backup is somehow found.

2. Is peace possible in the subcontinent without resolution of Kashmir ?

Obviously NO. Kashmir has been one of the main cause of major disputes between the two countries. Even Bangladesh came in to being, due to this animosity between the two nations. It gave an opportunity to India to make use of civil disobedience in East Pakistan, and break the integrity of the Quaid's Pakistan. A friendly India would not have bothered this much to disintegrate the country.


3. Has the statement on Kashmir of President Musharraf, quoted out of context by media?

It is one of the most interesting and diplomatic thing to analyze. His statement has NOT been quoted out of context at all. This is what the President of Pakistan, and his military comrades want. To provide a peace in the region, to start a new chapter of economic progress. This follows Chinese strategies. They decided sometime ago, that up to 2050 AD, China will NOT engage into any military conflicts. Unfortunately, for China, this is providing some independence to their break-away province of Taiwaan. But such costs are to be borne, for the sake of overall national progress.

Therefore, each side will try to interpret the statements of President of Pakistan, to its own advantage. But the final outcome and objective on both sides will be the same: Dividing Kashmir between themselves, with some open movement on either sides.

Best Regards.

Very Sincerely Yours,

HASHIM SYED MOHAMMAD BIN QASIM



Hashim Syed Mohammad Bin Qasim, Pakistan - 19 December, 2003

KASHMIR

The most important thing is the role of UN regarding our legitimate stand on KASHMIR ,if UN cannot simply intervene they should bluntly say so ,by lingering on this problem and leaving PAKISTAN in lurch as always is only aggravating the problem.Its high time our govt should demand a clear cut stratedgy of UN regarding KASHMIR .peace can only be possible if both govt should show restraint and come up with one line of action .If both agree that issue can only be solved bilaterally without involving UN then they should do it .the real objective is peace and consenses it does not matter how they achieve it .

Aisha Sana, Pakistan - 19 December, 2003

U Turn?

We have seen that Pakistan's Afghan policy failed miserably, and now its Kashmir's turn. In Pakistan military makes decisions to first create / keep conflicts and then take U Turns from their positions, bringing insult to this poor nation.

Sunny, Pakistan - 19 December, 2003

Gen.Musharraf Readyness to Drop Demand on IHK-Referendum is Like He Gen without Presidency !

Musharraf Readyness to Put-Aside Kashmir-Dispute by Not Claiming anymore IHK-Referendum is Like AJK Shirt & IHK Pants.
Thus on Kasmir-Claim Does Musharraf Want IHK Be Left Remained By India to be Handed-Over to India in This Way India could Claim United(AJK+IHK) to India If Musharraf would Drop Pak Demand of Referendum on
IHK is Like Gen without Pres Seat Topi to No Longi.
Like Indian Army Moved into IHK on Demand of Local Ruler Same could Repeat
n Demand of Balouchistan IRAN could Take-Over & on Demands of NWFP The Afghanistan may Take-Over
Sindh into Rajistan-India & Punjab into Indian-Punjab If Pak be Left by Mush-ar-Raf.
Mr.F.Koch{IPN}MHRW-JAIC

Al-Haj.Mr.F.Koch{IPN}Moslim Human Rights Watch (JAIC), Netherlands - 19 December, 2003

have trust on our leaders

Musharraf said once.

While solving the Kashmir dispute, both India and Pakistan must have a win win situation.....
Deviation from certain stands are acceptable as long as the goals are achieved.........
PAKISTAN MUST ACHIEVE ITS OBJECTIVE......while both countries keep their dignity.

Adnan, Pakistan - 19 December, 2003

Wish peace to Kashmiris

1. What Musharraf has said was being expected since long. Let's see what comes next.

2. Our Kashmir policy has so far been a failure. Let's change it at earliest. What we can do for Kashmiris is that we should wish peace and prosperity to them and stop boasting of being their liberators.


3. Kashmiris make a meagre portion of 140 million Muslims in India, all integrated into the federal set-up. Indian consitution allows Kashmiris to even elect their PM and have a president. They enjoy same previlige in Pakistan as well.

4. It is very importat that Kashmiris should enjoy freedom of expression, job opportunities,and the right to travel accross LoC.


Riaz Missen, Pakistan - 20 December, 2003

Out of Context

The very next day I had the opportunity to listen to the President.He explained at length what had he said in his interview. While his over keen tosettle kashmir, he is certainly not going to sell off. He wants to bargain. Well it is full of danger, severe dangers. Walking back off UN resolution is an effort to start the brgining process.
Well with out him being a legitimate president the inherant weakness will weaken the bargaining even. India will try to exploit it. They did their best at Agra.
Musharraf can stand India but US he may not.

hayat, Pakistan - 20 December, 2003

Musharraf's Agenda

The Musharraf's statement about putting aside UN resolutions for solving Kashmir dispute came as a surprise. For over fifty

years we have been pushing the world and India to respect the UN about solving the int. problems and now all of a sudden we

will be taking a U turn on our 50 yr long decision just like we did about Taliban and Israel. it seem that Musharraf has

chosen a very corrupt person to be his role model and that is George Bush. That guy also went beyond UN to show his

superirorty in the world and now this General is also going beyong UN to get back his domestic support and be a torch bearer.

RIght for self determination is Kashimiri's foremost right and after so many years of struggle we were able to get the

international support about this issue. The UN resolution were the bench mark for us to support Kashmiri's in their fight of

self determination, or atleast thats how it was always told. Musharraf should not become a puppet in the hands of US

and his advisers and should also respect the sentiments and feelings of the nation and should never take such decisions

without taking nation in confidence. India might be giving many positive signals to improve relations but we should never

forget its the same India that less then a year ago was ready to fire its guns on our country and has always been doing it!

Mohammad Arslan, Pakistan - 21 December, 2003

Kashmir Resolution

Musharraf has said nothing new. ZAB conceded UN Resolution on Kashmie long ago in his Simla Agreement with Indra Gandhi.

Col. Jafri (Retd), Pakistan - 21 December, 2003

The Right Solution.

Sometimes back I had stated that an Independent Kashmir is the best solution to end this conflict.Both India and
Pakistan will sign an accord
at the UNSC assuring that they would not interfere and
both give route acess for the
external trade to Kashmir.

Khalid Rahim, Canada - 21 December, 2003

I am a bit concerned.....

i am a bit concerned bcoz if we see the past indians have been so cunning in there dealings with pakistan look i'll give u examples.see 'shimlaa accord' 'lahore accord'are the once where they had melted pakistanis with there gestures that we the two countries are just to resolve our differences. we The pakistanis went calm our 'declarations' went too mild hardly mensioning kashmir issue so india has had smming in there hands for bargain when ever we talk about United Nations resulutions on kashmir they start reffering to above disscussed 'accords'. so thats how i have a doubt in my mind that those cunning people might take advantage of our good gestures again.ALLAH O ALLAM
maasallam
yours truly,
fasih ali khan

fasih ali khan, Pakistan - 22 December, 2003

Kashmir

Our brave soldier, self declared President, has unilaterally decided to resolve the Kashmir issue, tossing out the UN resolution.
it's another fiasco like
Kargil. Did he once give consideration to the wishes of the people of that region. Who has given him the authority to even make such a statement. Trust our General to goof up once again. Who is he going to blame now?

apervai, Pakistan - 22 December, 2003

Kashmir Issue

I think what president said is right becuase we need to give it an end to killing of innocents, which does not only makes the area un-safe but also tourist feel un-safe visiting other parts of Pakistan which directly effects lives in Northern Areas of Pakistan. And we all know these poor people's daily bread depends on tourism industry only.

EK, Pakistan - 23 December, 2003

Flexibility is important in Kashmir

The Kashmir issue has led to a lot of bloodshed and hatred being spread. The governments of the two countries are the real obstructions in the resolution of the issue, as they continue to harp on their dogmatic positions. I agree that the demand for a plebiscite is a very justified one, and that both India and Pakistan should withdraw troops from the whole of Kashmir and let the Kashmiris decide their own future. But sadly, due to the right wing hardliners, the Indian Government is finding it tough to be flexible.
Once this Kashmir issue is resolved, we can have people to people contacts. We can exchange culture . We speak a very similar language. I being a Punjabi, feel exactly as a Punjabi from Lahore would have felt. The time has come to think and act forward, so why can't India and Pakistan at least get together and live peacefully?
While we remember Shri Jinnah, we should also not lose sight of Mahatama Gandhi. Both wanted to see the people of the subcontinent happy. So let us try and achieve that.

Rohit Kumar Rohela, Hungary - 26 December, 2003

1. All sides to the dispute should completely forget UN resolutions. The atmosphere and demographics of Kashmir has changed in the past 50 years. The UN resolutions are obsolete.
2. Peace is not possible with or without resolution of Kashmir problem. But it will certainly reduce the violence to a great extent. Unfortunately, a small section of subcontinent has made a career out of terrorism. we have to rehabilitate the youth and provide them with employment through economic development in order to achieve lasting peace. Any resolution of Kashmir dispute will be possible only through some compromise on each side. In the absence of employment and positive future, this compromise will be the fuel for future violence. We have to rehabilitate Kashmiri youth as well as non-Kashmiri terrorists after the potential resolution of dispute. This means getting back the AK-47 wielding youth to the mainstream economic development. It will need a lot of vision and patience.
3. We shouldnt be concerned about what Musharraf says and whether he was misquoted. What matters more is what Musharraf (or Vajpayee for that matter) does in terms of bringing peace to everyday life in Kashmir.
Historically, Kashmir has never completely favored independence, merging with India or Pakistan. A framework that can allow partial involvement of both countries in monitoring of self-ruled government in Kashmir with semi-permeable borders, is an appropriate direction towards resolving the issue at the moment. UN or anyone else doesnt understand the problem as much as India, Pakistan and Kashmir does. We can solve it if we control our respective fundamentalists.

KD, Hungary - 30 December, 2003

Ours

Kashmir is ours. No amount of dialogue is going to change that. Its time we convert the LOC to become a permanent border.

Venky, Hungary - 03 January, 2004

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