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Kasuri links solution of Kashmir with Sir Creek, Siachen

Written by: Staff
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Islamabad, Mar 17: Pakistan Foreign Minister Khurshid Kasuri has said it will be easier for India and Pakistan to move forward on the Kashmir issue if progress is achieved on Sir Creek and Siachen issues.

However, he criticised the slow progress on Pakistan-India dialogue on the settlement of the Kashmir issue.

''If we set Kashmir aside, even slightest progress cannot be achieved with regard to solution of minor issues of the Sir Creek and the Siachen. Supporters of peace in this region are greatly disappointed by this slow-moving talks,'' Kasuri said in an interview to a local television channel.

He said President Pervez Musharraf wanted to seek a solution to the simmering Kashmir issue, which should be acceptable to all stakeholders.

''Pakistan wants durable peace in the region but it is impossible (to achieve) until a solution to the Kashmir issue is found. No one can find a solution to this issue without keeping in mind the wishes of the Kashmiri people,'' he said.

Kasuri said Pakistan was making accelerated diplomatic efforts following the president's proposals on the Kashmir issue.

Pakistan has informed all major players of the world, he said, adding that Pakistan knew bilateral efforts were needed to settle the issue. Observing that the resolution of the Kashmir issue was in the interest of the international community, he said that resolving the issue was the only way to move forward.

He said that Pakistan had held talks with US President George W Bush and British Prime Minister Tony Blair and with the foreign ministers of other countries on the issue.

He said the world community had praised President Musharraf's proposals on Kashmir and said that it clearly demonstrated a bold, courageous and flexible attitude.

He said the present situation was better than the one witnessed in 2001, when both countries' militaries were confronting each other on their borders.

UNI

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