Moderate Hurriyat Conference leaders did not feel strongly about India pardoning Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru, leaked US diplomatic cables have revealed.
According to the cables, the leaders were not opposed to hanging Guru if he was guilty, but felt he not adequately represented during his trial.
The expose comes a time when Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Omar Abdullah has reignited the debate over clemency for Guru, who was found guilty in the 2001 Parliament attack case.
"If someone is a terrorist, they should meet a violent end," noted the diplomatic cable quoting an unnamed moderate Hurriyat leader. The cable, titled Kashmir: Pending execution causing strife for Congress, was sent by US Charge d'Affaires Geoffrey Pyatt. According to the cable, the leader reportedly told the US political office that moderate Hurriyat members were unable to express this view publicly because of the mood in the Valley and threat from terrorists.
The cable said, "Moderate Hurriyat Leader told political office candidly that his faction of separatists was remaining as quiet as possible about the issue because they do not feel strongly that India should pardon Afzal."
For this reason, the moderate Hurriyat has remained relatively quiet about the issue, the cable said.