Chidambaram condemns attack on Mirwaiz's aide, says quiet peace dialogue to continue

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New Delhi, Dec 5 (ANI): Union Home Minister P Chidambaram today condemned the attack on Hurriyat chief Mirwaiz Umer Farooq's aide Fazl Haque Qureshi, but said the talks will continue in a quiet way.

Chidambaram's comments came out as the moderate Hurriyat group called for a Kashmir shutdown today in protest against the attack on Qureshi.

Mirwaiz Umer Farooq, the chief of the moderate faction, made it clear that they will not allow the attack to scuttle the peace process in Kashmir.

"We want to inform all those destructive elements that the Hurriyat Conference will not be cowed down by attacks such as these. We will see the Kashmir issue through its end. It is our endeavour to look for a solution for the problems prevalent here by means of talks with Pakistan and India," he said.

Unidentified gunmen allegedly belonging to Al-Nasreen terror group, opened fire and critically wounded Fazl Haque Qureshi on Friday evening. The group is believed to be a front for the Lashkar-e-Toiba and the Hizb-ul-Mujahadeen.

Qureshi is a senior separatist leader and executive committee member of the All Party Hurriyat Conference (Freedom) and also the chairman of the Peoples Political Front.

The incident took place in the Soura locality of Srinagar. He is still said to be in a critical condition at the Sher-e-Kashmir Institute of Medical Sciences (SKIMS).

Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah condemned the attack, saying it was "an attempt to derail the peace process". He hoped the attack would strengthen the people's resolve in Kashmir to pursue peace more actively.

National Conference Chairman Farooq Abdullah said the shooting was a clean attack against those who want peace. Muzaffar Baig, a senior leader of the opposition People's Democratic Party (PDP) said the shooting suggested that someone wanted to derail the peace process.

The Kashmir Valley is said to be quite tense in the wake of the attack.

Latest reports said Qureshi has undergone a three-hour operation on his skull, and doctors are hopeful about him making a turn around. (ANI)

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