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Jammu, Apr 10 (UNI) Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Patron Mufti Mohammad Sayeed today expressed hope that the proposed visits of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee to Pakistan would reinforce the resolve of the two countries to carry forward the ''sagging'' peace process.

Addressing a public meeting in tehsil Mendhar of Poonch district, Mr Mufti said the leadership of India and Pakistan would have to demonstrate strong political will to free the people of Jammu and Kashmir from the shackles of the security syndrome that bedevils both the countries.

''Not only the people of state but the whole sub-continent is yearning for sustainable peace and progress, and I hope the political leadership of the two countries would address the issues in good faith and with sincerity of purpose to realise the dream of a peaceful, prosperous and progressive South Asia.'' he said.

''Peace process has become a necessity for the two countries and there is a reciprocal acceptance of its legitimacy at the people's level,'' Mufti said asserting, ''while various CBMs have been initiated to make the peace process substantive, much more has to be done to realise the true potential of the confidence building process.'' The people of Jammu and Kashmir would welcome enhanced trade between the two countries, and simultaneous progress on Kashmir would accelerate the normalisation process to the great advantage of the two countries, the PDP patron added.

UNI VBH ARB RN2003

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