By Arif Qoreshi
Islamabad: All Party Hurriyat Conference leaders are coming on week-long visit of Pakistan in mid December confirmed by its Pakistan chapter convener Mehmood Ahmed Saghar for talks over Kashmir with the Pakistani leadership.
Talking with Fortress News Mehmood Ahmed Saghar confirmed that the separatists have received formal invitation from Delhi-based Pakistan High Commission around two weeks ago and visit is scheduled to be held in Islamabad between December 17 and 23.
Mahmood Ahmad Saghir confirmed that the invitation was sent to all executive member of All Party Hurriyat Conference “Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, Shabir Ahmad Shah, Bilal Gani Lone, Abdulgani Butt, Aga Hassan Budgami, Abbas Ansari.
Apart from the all parties hurriat conference Libration Front Chairman Yaseen Malilk And Syed Ali Shah Gelani has also been invited.
The participation of Yasin Malik, Chairman JKLF, also seems undecided on account of his health issues. He is in New Delhi for his second kidney operation, which has come not long after he was operated upon his first kidney.
When asked about the participation of Libration Front Chairman Yaseen Malik in the proposed dialogue on Kashmir here in Islamabad, his Spokes Man Rafiq Dar replied that our consultation is going on in this regard.
Syed Ali Shah Geelani had been criticizing the change in Pakistan’s stance over Kashmir. And he was one of those who rejected the four-point formula by then Pakistan’s former president, General Parvez Mushrraf, for resolution of the Kashmir issue.
All eyes on Indian government to see whether they allowed Syed Ali Shah Gelani to visit Pakistan or not. A news report in the Indian Express today said that New Delhi is unlikely to create hurdles as the government feels curbing interaction would breed suspicion. Moreover, India feels the ruling Pakistan Peoples Party is organizing the meeting ahead of general elections there to counter allegations of soft-peddling the Kashmir issue.
Mahmood Ahmad Saghir said that ahead of the weeklong visit on December 17, the APHC leaders would meet with the Pakistani High Commissioner, Salman Bashir and other officials in New Delhi.
Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, however, had met with Pakistani Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar during the UN General Assembly session held in September, and is said to have stressed on the need to include Kashmir in the improving dialogue between New Delhi and Islamabad.
The writer is an editor of thefortress.com.pk