'Left out' Kashmiri leadership pans Pak govt. for Gilgit-Baltistan reforms

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Islamabad, Sep.5 (ANI): The Pakistan government's new administrative reforms for the Northern Areas, Gilgit-Baltistan, have not gone down well within the political leadership of the region.

The reforms, which allow autonomy to the region, have been severely criticised by leaders of Pakistan occupied Kashmir (PoK), who demanded that all the leaders from Kashmir must be thoroughly consulted before such important decisions are taken.

Former Pakistan Prime Minister and Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) chief Nawaz Sharif has also condemned the government over the issue, saying it did not take on board Kashmiri leaders before announcing the 'Gilgit-Baltistan Empowerment and Self-Governance Order 2009'.

Former JKLF leader Yasin Malik has also criticised the Pakistan government and said it had approved the package without taking all stakeholders into confidence.

Meanwhile, Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi briefed the Kashmiri leadership and leaders of political parties of PoK over the Kashmir and Gilgit-Baltistan issue.

Despite the Pakistan government not giving Gilgit Baltistan the status of the country's fifth province, the reforms would see the region having a legislative assembly, a chief minister and a governor.

The briefing was attended by Minister for Information Qamar Zaman Kaira, PoK President Raja Zulqarnain Khan, PoK Prime Minister Muhammad Yaqoob Khan, and other Kashmiri leaders, The Nation reports. (ANI)

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