Gilani seeks meaningful dialogue on Kashmir

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Rezaul H Laskar

Islamabad, Feb 5 (PTI) Prime Minister Yousuf RazaGilani today asked India to hold a "meaningful" dialogue withPakistan to resolve the Kashmir issue, which he contended wasat the centre of tensions in South Asia.

"I urge India to enter into a meaningful andresult-oriented dialogue with Pakistan on the issue of Jammuand Kashmir," Gilani said in a message read out at a jointsession of the legislative assembly and council ofPakistan-occupied Kashmir in Muzaffarabad.

India''s refusal to implement relevant UN SecurityCouncil resolutions has blocked the way to a durable peace inthe region, contended Gilani, who was scheduled to address thejoint session but had to cancel his visit to Muzaffarabad dueto bad weather and poor visibility.

Gilani offered Pakistan''s "unconditional willingness"to discuss all issues, including the issue of Kashmir, withIndia.

He said sincerity and seriousness should remain thebasic fundamentals of the dialogue process and that theparticipation of Kashmiris is essential for any effort toresolve the issue of Jammu and Kashmir.

Gilani also reiterated the pledge of the Pakistanipeople to "continue to extend moral, political and diplomaticsupport to Kashmiris in their just struggle for the right toself-determination".

Gilani''s remarks came a day ahead of a scheduledmeeting between the Foreign Secretaries of India and Pakistanon the sidelines of a SAARC meet in Bhutan.

The top diplomats are expected to discuss ways torevive the stalled peace process between the two countries.

The premier''s message, read out by PoK speaker,claimed that the Kashmir dispute involves "fundamental rightsand the principle of self-determination".

Gilani said: "We cannot ignore the responsibility inaddressing the miseries and sufferings of innocent people".

Pakistan remains firmly committed to its principledstance on Kashmir based on relevant UN Security Councilresolutions, he said.

"The Kashmir dispute remains close to the heart ofevery Pakistani and the future of both Pakistan and Kashmir islinked," he added.

He said the alleged rights violations in Kashmir havebeen observed by the international community and noted by theworld media.

"The Jammu and Kashmir issue remains an unfulfilledagenda of the United Nations," he said.

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