01:24 GMT +320 October 2019
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    Pinaka 214MM multi barrel rocket launcher roll during the final full dress rehearsal for the Indian Republic Day parade in New Delhi on January 23, 2011

    Kashmiri Secessionists Favour Talks, Say No To Military Solution

    © AFP 2019 / RAVEENDRAN
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    New Delhi (Sputnik): After the resounding victory of Prime Minister Narendra Modi for a second term, the Governor of Jammu and Kashmir stated that he expects the secessionist group to come around for talks. The state has been under the president’s rule since August 2018, when the ruling BJP pulled the rug from under the coalition government.

    A leader from the largest secessionist group in India’s Kashmir Valley has said his group is in favour of talks to resolve the decades-long dispute concerning the rights of local Kashmiris.

    Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, Chairman of All Party Hurriyat Conference (APHC), a political group in Kashmir, said that they have always maintained engagement and dialogue among the stakeholders, as the most peaceful means of resolving the Kashmir issue and not settling anything by force.

    “We have not said anything new. We have always been saying this. Kashmiris being the most affected party for the past seventy-two years, naturally want its resolution. Since its inception when all parties came together under one umbrella, APHC has maintained and reiterated that engagement and dialogue among stakeholders are the best and most peaceful means of resolution of Kashmir issue and not force. We have engaged with both India and Pakistan in the past", Farooq said.

    Kashmir has been a major bone of contention between rivals India and Pakistan since their independence from British rule in 1947, as both claim it in full but govern in part.

    Farooq said he believes the Kashmir issue cannot be resolved militarily or through confrontation, but dialogue and deliberation. He said he wants New Delhi to consider Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan’s offer of dialogue on all issues between the two countries as the way forward.

    India’s stated position is that violence and dialogue cannot go hand-in-hand and any discussion can only be held under the framework of the country's Constitution. New Delhi is also not agreeable for tripartite talks involving Islamabad, claiming the entire territory of Jammu and Kashmir belongs to India.

    Tensions between the two nations ran high after alleged terrorists, with purported camps in Pakistan, killed 40 personnel from India’s paramilitary force in Pulwama in February this year. India responded by carrying out aerial strikes on alleged militant training camps in Balakot, Pakistan-administered Kashmir.

     

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