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    PM got first-ever US commitment on Kashmir: Mushahid

    PM got first-ever US commitment on Kashmir: Mushahid




    LAHORE, July 24: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif got the first-ever public US commitment of its involvement in the Kashmir issue,
    Federal Information Minister Mushahid Husain told an all-parties seminar on the Kargil crisis and the Washington statement
    organized by the Lahore High Court Bar Association on Saturday.
    Held in the LHCBA's Shuhada-i-Karachi Hall from about 11am to 3pm, the seminar was addressed by Pakistan Awami Ittehad's
    Nawabzada Nasrullah Khan, Jamaat-i-Islami's Qazi Husain Ahmad, Tehrik-i-Insaaf's Imran Khan, former foreign minister Sardar
    Assef Ahmed Ali, former federal minister Ghulam Mustafa Khar, All Parties Hurriyat Conference leader Ghulam Mohammad Safee,
    Al Badr Mujahideen commander Bakht Zameen, Jammu and Kashmir JI chief Rashid Turabi and Maulana Akram Awan of Tanzeemul Akhwan.
    The hall was packed to capacity with a large number of people standing. Two short-circuit TV sets were placed in the compound
    beside the hall for open-air viewing.
    The prime minister was roundly criticized 'for not taking the people, parliament or the opposition into confidence on the Kargil
    situation or on his Washington visit', for first disowning the Mujahideen and then agreeing to call them back; for failing to mobilize international support for the Kashmiri freedom fighters; for sanctifying the Line of Control and thereby dividing Kashmir; for confirming the bilateral process by reiterating adherence to the Simla Agreement and the Lahore declaration for turning a tactical gain into a strategic fiasco and snatching defeat from the jaws of victory; for causing an irreparable loss to Pakistan and Kashmir; and for trying to befool the people by portraying the July 4 Washington communique as a great diplomatic achievement.'
    A number of speakers questioned the regime's ability, credibility and legitimacy. Two Kashmiri leaders asked Pakistan to declare
    the whole of Jammu and Kashmir constitutionally a part of its territory if it wanted a bilateral accord with India or give the Kashmiris a free hand and treat them as the third party to the conflict. In any case, the Pakistan government should not try to divide the Kashmiris and win over to its side politicians like Sardar Qayyum Khan. Allama Rashid Turabi described Azad Kashmir as a den of corruption.
    MUSHAHID HUSAIN: Replying to criticism, the information minister said his very presence at the seminar was a proof of the
    government's commitment to democracy and the cause of Kashmir. The difference was one of tactics: while others believed in tall
    claims and sabre rattling, the prime minister was a man of action, few words and quiet diplomacy. Kargil was a successful operation
    launched by the Mujahideen with full moral, political and strategic support from Pakistan, he added.
    The operation, he said, has achieved its purpose of internationalizing the Kashmir issue. Referring to an allegation that the issue has only been 'Americanized', the minister said in the present-day world, 'Americanization' means internationalization and vice-versa. No previous regime, including that of Ayub Khan, could win a US commitment to a Kashmir solution. Today the whole world knows that Kashmir is the most dangerous nuclear flashpoint in the world. The purpose was not to occupy a few peaks but to draw world attention to the importance of a Kashmir solution. There may be more Kargils and not necessarily at Kargil but at places like Baramula.
    The Indian army, he said, got its worst thrashing after the 1962 Indo-Chinese conflict. Yet there was no war or threat of war. As for the Lahore declaration, he said, India conceded for the first time that Kashmir is a dispute which should be resolved through talks.
    He reminded Nawabzada Nasrullah Khan and Sardar Assef Ahmed Ali that it was during their tenure in office that the Benazir
    government performed a hat-trick of withdrawals of three resolutions on Kashmir at as many fora.

    The single most important outcome of the Washington communique, the minister said, is that international pressure has been shifted
    from Pakistan to India. While earlier Pakistan was facing threats of sanctions, now India is under pressure to discuss Kashmir.
    Twenty US senators have written to President Clinton to appoint a special envoy on Kashmir and ensure monitoring of the Line of
    Control by a reinforced UN military observers group for India and Pakistan. British Foreign Secretary Robin Cook has also called
    for strengthening of the observers group.

    Referring to Qazi Husain Ahmad's claim that some US dailies like 'Daily News' wrote two editorial notes after its editorial board's
    meeting with him, Mushahid Husain said 'The Washington Post', the most influential US newspaper, carried an editorial in its July 15
    issue calling upon the Clinton administration to work for a Kashmir solution if it wanted lasting peace in the region.

    Meanwhile, Asia Watch, a renowned organization, has urged all five permanent UN Security Council members to suspend all
    assistance to India for its human rights violation in Kashmir. A four-member cabinet committee comprising himself, Foreign Minister
    Sartaj Aziz, Religious Affairs Minister Raja Zafarul Haq and Kashmir Affairs Minister Gen (retd) Majeed Malik has been set up to
    intensify diplomatic efforts for Kashmir solution and Mr Aziz has already left for Finland.

    Pakistan, he declared, is at one with the Mujahideen and will continue to extend them all moral and material support. The present
    government believes that 'Kashmir' is the missing 'K' of 'Pakistan' and the country would not be complete without it. If the PM was
    amenable to pressure, he would not have spurned a five-billion-dollar aid offer and gone ahead with six nuclear explosions to India's
    five. He was equally firm on missile tests.

    While Pakistan has been saved from becoming another Iraq or Libya, the minister said, India was facing at least 13 insurgencies
    within its border. It has a 14-party coalition government and was facing much the same problems as Pakistan did in the 50s. It has
    to appoint Sikhs and Christians as official spokesmen to hide the ugly face of Hindu fundamentalism. Pakistan was not isolated.
    China and Saudi Arabia and the other Muslim countries were behind it. He saluted the Mujihideen and asked their leaders to watch
    'Heroes of Kargil' on PTV at 9:30pm on Saturday.

    ASSEF AHMED ALI: The former foreign minister described the Kargil operation as a military epic, Pakistan's finest hour. In a
    brilliant strategic move, the Mujahideen occupied peaks that originally belonged to Pakistan or Azad Kashmir and inflicted heavy
    casualties on India when it tried to reclaim them.

    Things started changing with US General Anthony Zinni's visit. India was not in a position to fight or widen the conflict but the PM
    surrendered all the gains in Washington. He lost the war of nerves and decided on a pullout when Pakistan had an upper hand. He
    favourably compared Simla and Camp David with the abject surrender negotiated by Mr Nawaz Sharif.

    G M KHAR: The former federal minister said Mr Clinton was probably the only person whom Mr Nawaz Sharif told the whole
    truth. Before his Washington visit, he declared Kargil has been occupied by Kashmiri freedom fighters and Pakistan cannot ask
    them to withdraw. He brought the country a bad name and it was being depicted as a liar and its army as a rogue army. There is no
    institution in the country to hold him accountable for 'sabotaging the Kashmiris' struggle.' The only way out for Pakistan is to get rid
    of him but Mr Khar regretted that the opposition has also failed in its job of mobilizing the people.

    IMRAN KHAN: The Tehrik-i-Insaaf leader said that thanks to Mr Nawaz Sharif, Pakistan lost a unique opportunity for a Kashmir
    solution and durable peace. He said the July 4 communique accommodates the Indian viewpoint exclusively and has no redeeming
    feature.

    He said Islam frees mankind from all fears and bondages. What Mr Nawaz Sharif was afraid of losing by resisting the US pressure?
    he asked. Whose Shariat the PM seeks or claims to enforce? The Holy Prophet (PBUH) did not believe in amassing wealth and
    building and living in palaces, Imran Khan said.

    He alleged that Mr Nawaz Sharif had assured US official Robin Raphel in 1996 that he being a Punjabi of Kashmiri origin, was
    much better placed than Benazir Bhutto or any other politician to execute American agenda in Pakistan. The country, he warned,
    might face even greater problems if the opposition parties still did not unite to oust the Nawaz government.

    QAZI HUSAIN AHMAD: The Jamaat-i-Islami amir condemned the argument that pullout from Kargil was accepted to save
    Pakistan. It flows from a misconception that Pakistan and Kashmir are two separate entities. They are not only one but Kashmir
    occupies a more vital place. No less a leader than the Quaid-i-Azam had described Kashmir as 'the jugular vein' of Pakistan. If the
    argument is carried further, tomorrow we may say that we are prepared to sacrifice Karachi or Quetta or even Lahore to save
    Pakistan. Where will our withdrawal end? he asked.

    He accused the government of not properly projecting the cause of Kashmir abroad. He also criticized former prime minister
    Benazir Bhutto and asked PML and PPP workers to rise above party considerations to fight for the right of Kashmiris. About the
    government plan to seal Lahore to foil the JI's 'million march' on Sunday, he warned the government against tactics adopted by it
    during (Indian Premier) Vajpayee's visit to Lahore.

    Tanzeemul Akhwan chief Akram Awan said it is always 'the compulsions of Pakistan' which set back the Kashmiris' struggle. The
    Mujahideen had isolated several divisions of the Indian army in Siachn and Laddakh by cutting off an 80-kilometre stretch of the
    Srinagar-Kargil-Leh Road when Pakistan yielded to American pressure.

    It was the same in 1948, when freedom fighters were about to take the Srinagar airport; in 1962, when Pakistan was prevented
    from making any military move during the Indo-Chinese conflict; in 1965, when Pakistan had to sign the Tashkent declaration; and
    in 1972, when the ceasefire line was converted into the Line of Control. It is said in favour of the Simla agreement that Pakistan got
    back 90,000 prisoners of war under it. But who gave India 90,000 PoWs in the first instance? he asked.

    NASRULLAH KHAN: The PAI chief said even according to British Foreign Secretary Robin Cook, Kashmir is an unfinished
    agenda of the partition of 1947. Since a Labour ministry was in office that year, the party included efforts for a Kashmir solution in
    its manifesto. As Kashmir committee chairman during the Benazir Bhutto government, the Nawabzada said he had successfully
    projected the issue because by its refusal to talk, India itself had annulled the Simla agreement. The issue was back in the
    international arena. However, by the Lahore declaration and now by the Washington communique, Mr Nawaz Sharif has revived
    the Simla agreement.

    He regretted that the prime minister 'consistently lied to his constituents.' Mushahid Husain had claimed that Niaz A Naik might have
    gone to Delhi on a private visit and that the government had nothing to do with it. However, Mr Naik told the Press in the Indian
    capital that the director-general of military operations of the two countries would meet to work out withdrawaled.

    If Kargil was just a useless mountainous terrain, Nawabzada Nasrullah asked, why was India so worried that it mobilized its entire
    military machine to dislodge the Mujahideen? Its air force subjected the area to carpet bombing. While the Indian premier took all
    major political parties into confidence in the absence of Lok Sabha (lower house of Indian parliament), Mr Nawaz Sharif reluctantly
    held a briefing after the dispute was over.

    He recalled that Z A Bhutto had taken the National Assembly into confidence before going to Simla in 1972. Now American
    commandos were being allowed to carry out their mission against Afghanistan but nobody knows about the government plan. The
    PTV, he told Mushahid Husain, was still more concerned about the character assassination and media trial of opposition leaders.

    KASHMIRI LEADERS: J and K Jamaat-i-Islami Amir Allama Rashid Turabi said the Kashmiris suffer whenever Pakistan shows
    weakness. The Pakistanis should realize that the Kashmiri struggle is infact, Tehrik-i-Takmeel-i-Pakistan and the country is
    incomplete without Kashmir. Nuclear blasts by Pakistan infused a new life into the Kashmiris' fight, which had been lingering since
    1988. In fact, the Kargil operation had a direct link with Pakistan's nuclear capability. The Mujahideen were certain that India dare
    not attack a nuclear Pakistan to retaliate against any incursion.

    He requested the Pakistan government through Information Minister Mushahid Husain 'to get out of bilateralism.' The Lahore and
    Washington accords should immediately be renounced. On the basis of a 1947 Muslim Conference resolution, Pakistan can declare
    Jammu and Kashmir a part of its territory. In the alternative, it should give the Kashmiris a free hand to decide their destiny.

    All Parties Hurriyet Conference Secretary-General Ghulam Mohammad Safee said Pakistan must cast off the American yoke if it
    wants to play its due role in the freedom struggle of Kashmiris. The Kashmiri Mujahideen were so emboldened by the Pakistani
    nuclear blasts that they decided to go beyond hit-and-run raids. The Kargil operation was launched to hit India where it hurts most.
    The Kashmiris had their feet on India's neck but the Washington accord freed India of any pressure whatsoever.

    As agreed in the Kashmiri leaders' meeting with Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, the APHC has submitted certain proposals to realize
    the objective of Kashmiri's freedom from India. He feared that the Line of Control may become an international border and crossing
    it may be declared an offence.

    Al Badr commander Bakht Zameen, an Afghan Jihad veteran, said Mujahideen from all over Afghanistan and Pakistan were joining
    their Kashmiri brethren in ever larger numbers when the instrument of surrender was signed.

    However, he said no one can deflect the course of Jihad which was bound to succeed. Islam prohibits retreat. There were people
    who thought that the Russians would never get out of Afghanistan. Indian occupation is doomed and the freedom struggle will
    continue notwithstanding any agreement between Pakistan and the US or India, he said.


    dil....dilseeeee








    #2
    This guy Mushahid Hussain's comments won't fool even hot-headed Pakistani "mujahideen". You dont need to be an authority on the Kashmir issue to pick holes in his statements.

    >Kargil was a successful operation launched by the Mujahideen with full moral, political and strategic support from Pakistan, he added.<

    I wonder why that word "strategic" came in now after vehement denials by Pak. diplomats on international forums. Diplomacy = lying? It's gonna cost Pak. a lot of friends.

    >Today the whole world knows that Kashmir is the most dangerous nuclear flashpoint in the
    world.<

    And the world is convinced that Pak. is the aggressor. India has had a windfall, thanks to lack of co-ordination in the nefarious attempt.

    >The purpose was not to occupy a few peaks but to draw world attention to the importance of a Kashmir solution.<

    How does he know that? It was the mujahideen's plan, and the Pak Govt and Army has no contact with the mujahideen, according to Pak. bigshots.

    >There may be more Kargils and not necessarily at Kargil but at places like Baramula.<

    A threat from a diplomat! WoW! One more Kargil and Pakistan is branded a rogue nation by the whole world, it hasn't got the guts to risk it.

    > While earlier Pakistan was facing threats of sanctions, now India is under pressure to discuss Kashmir.<

    Pressure from whom? The International community knows what happened after the last set of "successful" talks.

    > A four-member cabinet committee comprising himself, Foreign Minister Sartaj Aziz, Religious Affairs Minister Raja Zafarul Haq and Kashmir Affairs Minister Gen (retd) Majeed Malik has been set up to intensify diplomatic efforts for Kashmir solution and Mr Aziz has already left for Finland.<

    Junkets before they get kicked out. Surely, they do have media in Finland and know all about Kargil, no diplomacy is going to rally support for terrorism.

    >the minister said, India was facing at least 13 insurgencies within its border.<

    Poor guy! Cant explain about troubles in Pak., wants to poke his nose into India. 13 insurgencies? That's a laf!

    >It has to appoint Sikhs and Christians as official spokesmen to hide the ugly face of Hindu fundamentalism.<

    This one is really good! Hello Mr.Frustrated, you dont know what India is like. We dont have hindu-mullahs, just one dumb Bal Thakeray, who has an army of mice. Worry about Harkat-ul-Ansar and the Taliban. India can wait. Hindu fundamentalism! Look whoz talking!

    >Pakistan was not isolated.China and Saudi Arabia and the other Muslim countries were behind it.<

    It was Saudi Arabia which finally convinced Nawaz Sharif that withdrawal is the only face-saving measure possible. I wonder which are the "other muslim countries".
    Simple ain't easy.

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      #3
      Info Ministry of Pak is a useless & wasteful department. Fact!

      Fata Morgana

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