Pakistan’s former foreign minister Khurshid Mahmud Kasuri has expressed hope that the launch of his book on Pakistan’s diplomacy in Mumbai on Monday would go off well.
Earlier this month, the Shiv Sena had threatened to disrupt the launch of Kasuri’s book ‘Neither a Hawk nor a Dove: An Insider’s Account of Pakistan’s Foreign Policy’. The move came a few days after the Sena’s threats led to the cancelling of Pakistani ghazal artist Ghulam Ali’s concert in Mumbai.
“I will be there as my hosts have invited me,” he said during an interaction session at the Centre for Research in Rural and Industrial Development in Chandigarh on Sunday. Earlier in the day, he deliberated on the Indo-Pak relations at the Kasauli literary fest.
Kasuri said no one from among the stakeholders in the erstwhile Indo-Pak peace process, including former prime inister Manmohan Singh, had challenged the content of the book, which contained voluminous details on the Indo-Pak diplomacy.
The book was first released in Lahore last month and the Mumbai launch is being organised by the Observer Research Foundation.
Kasuri said he had named almost all involved for their roles -- positive or negative -- in the peace process, including the Pakistani army generals.
“Those, including ex-PM Manmohan Singh, who read the book’s Pakistani edition, have not challenged its contents,” he said, adding that only talks and not war could resolve the Indo-Pak disputes, including Kashmir. “We have failed in so many wars to take away each other’s Kashmir,” he said.
“I listed nine wars where one million soldiers of both the nations were eyeball to eyeball for 11 months (in all), but no issue got resolved,” he added.
‘Hurriyat can’t be ignored’
Kasuri regretted that the Kashmiri leadership of Hurriyat was “not accepted by India”, terming Hurriyat as the true representatives of the Kashmiri people.
“Hurriyat (leadership) of Kashmir is important for us; they cannot be ignored by us (Pak) if we really want to convey the message of Kashmiris at any talks.”
‘Next war on water’
“If there is a war in times to come between the two countries, it would be on water,” Kasuri quoted his diplomacy colleague in Pakistan. He, however, said he did not foresee any further warfare between the two countries, as both had nuclear arsenal.