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PM says talks with Hurriyat ''meeting of minds''

Written by: Staff
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New Delhi, May 3 (UNI) Prime Minister Manmohan Singh today described as ''fruitful'' and ''meeting of minds'' the second rounds of talks with the moderate Hurriyat Conference and said the dialogue process augurs well for Jammu and Kashmir, India and the South Asian region.

During the almost two-hour-long talks, both the sides discussed ''sensitive and important'' issues and agreed to evolve a mechanism to resolve vexed Kashmir issue in a peaceful and amicable manner.

The Prime Minister asked the six-member Hurriyat Conference delegation, led by amalgam chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, to come back with ''specifics of the mechanism'' and then meet Home Minister Shivraj Patil.

''I am happy with the talks. It was a meeting of minds...this augurs well for the Jammu and Kashmir, people of India and the region,'' Prime Minister's Media Adviser Sanjaya Baru said while reading out Dr Singh's statement.

The six-member Hurriyat delegation comprised of Prof Abdul Ghani Bhat, Maulana Abbas Ansari, Bilal Ghani Lone, Fazal Haq Qureshi and Aga Syed Hassan, besides the Mirwaiz.

Dr Singh was assisted by Home Minister Shivraj Patil, National Security Advisor M K Narayanan and Centre's interlocutor for Jammu and Kashmir N N Vohra, besides other senior officials at the talks.

''The talks with Dr Singh were frank and fruitful... and both sides agreed to evolve a mechanism and discuss specifics to ensure forward movement on the dialogue process,'' the Mirwaiz told reporters after the meeting held at the Prime Minister's 7 Race Course Residence.

About the Hurriyat leaders' participation in May 25 roundtable in Srinagar, the Mirwaiz remained non-committal and said the decision had not been taken yet.

''We are waiting for the specifics. The Hurriyat Conference has not taken any decision yet. Let the details come,'' he said.

Almost all top separatists, including the Hurriyat leaders, did not attend the first roundtable, held February 25 here.

The Mirwaiz said the second round of talks, held seven months after the first phase of parleys on September 5 last year, with the Prime Minister was in continuation with the ''triangular dialogue process'' between India, Pakistan and the Hurriyat Conference.

''We discussed several issue like human rights, political prisoners and 'black laws' and all important and sensitive aspects of the Jammu and Kashmir issue,'' he added. However, he declined to give any details about ''sensitive issues''.

''Hurriyat is of the view that all the internal and external aspects of the dialogue have to be considered for the solution and the dialogue has to continue... all proposals need to be taken up on merit,'' he added.

He said the the main focus of XXX EDS pick up here from line one para 8 of DI 114 PM-HURRIYAT-SECOND LEAD TALKS TWO LAST NEW DELHI.

UNI NR RB VD RK2258

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