Farooq Abdullah hopeful about 'quiet dialogue' with Kashmir separatists

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New Delhi, Dec.3 (ANI): Union Minister for New and Renewable Energy Farooq Abdullah has said that the supposed 'quiet dialogue' between the Kashmiri separatists and the Home Ministry would be fruitful.

"There is no way these talks can fail," said Farooq Abdullah, on the sidelines of the launch of national biomass cook stove initiative in New Delhi.

"We are going forward with the talks, we want a final settlement of this issue and that's going to happen. It is not an question of autonomy, the question is talk. Whatever solution which will be acceptable to majority of the Indians, majority of the Pakistanis and the people on both sides of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh and the other side of Pakistani Kashmir will be the one that will be delivered. What will that be nobody can tell," he added.

Chidambaram on Wednesday had told members of the Rajya Sabha that he favoured a 'quite dialogue' with Kashmir's moderate political separatist group, the All Party Hurriyat (Freedom) Conference (APHC).

Chidambaram had also indicated that talks with Kashmiri separatist leaders would be held silently and out of the media glare.

The Chairman of the moderate faction of the All Party Hurriyat Conference (APHC), Mirwaiz Omar Farooq has denied holding any 'silent' discussions with the government, but acknowledged back channel contacts between the Hurriyat and the government.

The Hurriyat has urged New Delhi to pull out troops, release prisoners and end human rights violations before resuming peace talks.

Separatist groups have long demanded the withdrawal of Indian troops and scrapping of anti-terrorism laws, including the Armed Forces Special Powers Act that gives sweeping powers to security forces in Kashmir, where about 500,000 troops are stationed.

The Hurriyat began a dialogue with New Delhi in 2004, the first between the two sides since an armed revolt demanding independence began in 1989.

The last round of talks was held in May 2006. Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and the Hurriyat agreed then to establish a system to discuss solutions to the dispute over Kashmir, dating from the partition of the Indian subcontinent in the late 1940s. (ANI)

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