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Pak planning all-party meet on Balochistan

world Updated: Aug 28, 2009 20:42 IST

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Pakistan government plans to call an all-party conference on Balochistan with various Baluch leaders and elected representatives to discuss and resolve the grievances of the people of the restive southwestern province.

The issue of Balochistan figured prominently during a meeting between Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari and Muttahida Qaumi Movement leader Altaf Hussain in London Thursday night.

“Balochistan is the most important issue challenging Pakistan’s stability right now and it must be resolved on war footing. Pakistan’s stability is linked with Balochistan and now is the time that the genuine grievances of Baloch people must be addressed without delay,” Hussain was quoted by media reports as telling newsmen after the meeting.

He said President Zardari told him that the government was endeavouring to organise a conference with various Baluch leaders and elected representatives and discuss their grievances in depth to resolve them at the earliest.

Malik said the law and order situation in Pakistan had improved considerably and militants playing in the hands of the enemies of Pakistan were on the run.

“Only one and a half year ago, people were scared of sending their children to school but today the tide has been turned against the militants and their paymasters.”

“We took over at a time when our image was battered badly in the eyes of the world and (we) were like a sitting duck but we are absolutely clear in our resolve that we will go after anyone, irrespective of one’s ethnicity and belonging, who challenges the writ of the State. There will be no leniency on that,” he said.