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'UN resolutions on Kashmir not viable'

Pakistan-based Muttahida Jihad Council said that an "independent" Kashmir was the most viable solution.

india Updated: Jan 14, 2006 20:32 IST

Ahead of commencement of third round of Composite Dialogue between India and Pakistan, a conglomerate of Pakistan-basedterror groups has reportedly decided to give up its demand for implementation of UN resolutions for settling the Kashmir issue, in support of ideas of "independence and demilitarisation."

The Muttahida Jihad Council (MJC) headed by Chief of Hizbul Mujahideen Sayed Salahuddin has decided to support the idea of an "independent Kashmir and demilitarisation" of the state, Pakistan's Daily Times newspaper reported quoting an unidentified leader of an MJC-affiliated group.

"A consensus has been evolved among the MJC leaders not to oppose the idea of an independent Kashmir and its demilitarisation," he said, adding that MJC was of the view that an "independent" Kashmir was the most viable solution as UN resolutions failed resolve the issue.

According to the newspaper, the MJC leader said it was a major shift in the group's stance because earlier it had always supported the solution of the Kashmir issue in accordance with the UN resolutions.

"The UN resolutions on Kashmir have become irrelevant because Pakistani and some Kashmiri leaders have come up with new ideas to resolve the issue," he said.

Admitting that change in Pakistan's stand on UN resolutions necessitated the MJC to shift its stand, he said that the idea of an "independent" Kashmir was more viable than the "United States of Kashmir" and self-governance being floated by moderate Hurriyat leader Mirwaiz Umar Farooq with the tacit backing of Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf.

Musharraf had said in an interview recently that he was opposed to the idea of independence as an option to resolve Kashmir issue.

The change of stand of the MJC came after reports in the media here that Salahuddin was due to meet hardline Hurriyat leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani, a strong proponent of implementation of UN resolutions, during the Haj pilgrimage.

Significantly the new MJC stand came ahead of the Foreign Secretary-level talks between the two countries to start the third round of the Composite Dialogue process in New Delhi on January 17.

The Hizbul and MJC, backed by Pakistan's Jamat-e-Islami party maintained an ambivalent stand on the India-Pak initiatives to start the bus services and initially even opposed them.

The new stand of the MJC was apparently being tailored to shift away from UN resolutions and move it close to independence option being advocated by Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF) leader, Yasin Mallik who toured Pakistan extensively twice in the recent past.

The MJC also backed demilitarisation of Kashmir an option floated by Gen Musharraf and rejected by India, which said it would consider it only after Pakistan completely stopped infiltration and rolled back infrastructure of terrorism like training camps.

Musharraf while floating the demilitarisation of three key cities in Jammu and Kashmir, including Capital Srinagar has been indirectly advocating a "tandem" approach to scale down infiltration and demilitarisation of the Kashmir valley.

Pakistan was expected to put forward its ideas on self governance and demilitarisation at the New Delhi talks beginning next Tuesday.

Pakistan as well as Farooq were yet to elaborate on what they meant by self governance.

First Published: Jan 14, 2006 15:11 IST