Geelani, Mirwaiz urge peace at LoC

Geelani, Mirwaiz urge peace at LoC
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SRINAGAR: Chairmen of both factions of Hurriyat Conference – Syed Ali Geelani and Mirwaiz Umar Farooq – on Friday expressed concern over the flare-up between Indian and Pakistan armies at the Line of Control (LoC) and the loss of human lives due to unabated shelling. They urged both the nuclear powers to stop mayhem and killings at the border and start a process of peacefully settling the Kashmir dispute.
In a statement, Geelani said unless the Kashmir dispute is resolved in accordance with the wishes and aspirations of people, the risk of collision between the two nuclear powers will be devastating not only for the region but for the whole world.
He appealed to India and Pakistan to demonstrate restraint and wisdom and play a constructive role for peaceful resolution of the Kashmir issue, which he said poses a threat to world peace.
Blaming Indian authorities for their stubborn attitude, Geelani said, “Despite India utilising all its resources and military might for the last 70 years, the issue (of Kashmir) is there and not an iota of change seems to have happened on the ground.”
Terming the Kashmir issue as the bone of contention between India and Pakistan, Hurriyat (G) chairman said sincere steps were needed to resolve this dispute.
He said both nuclear countries must play their rightful role in facilitating a just and lasting solution of Kashmir dispute in accordance with relevant UN resolutions and wishes of Kashmiri people.
Mirwaiz while delivering the Friday sermon at the historic Jamia Masjid said it was virtual war at the LoC as the Indo-Pak armies were exchanging heavy artillery fire resulting in senseless loss of lives of innocent civilians on both sides.
He said not only civilians but soldiers on both sides of LoC also continue to get killed due to the continuous exchange of firing.
Mirwaiz said unless New Delhi gives up its obduracy regarding the dispute and gives real peace a chance there is no guarantee that the situation will change and improve. “One fails to understand why the leadership of both countries is delaying the resolution of the issue when it is in the interest of the people of both sides to start a sustained dialogue for the resolution of Kashmir dispute – the root cause of tension between them,” he said.
“It is long overdue that New Delhi and Islamabad allow the leadership of two divided parts of Kashmir including Gilgit-Baltistan, Ladakh, Pakistan-administered Kashmir and this part of Jammu and Kashmir to meet with each other and decide on their future course of action regarding their destiny, as such a step is of utmost importance for finding a resolution of Kashmir dispute acceptable to all parties most importantly to the people of Jammu and Kashmir,” the Hurriyat (M) chairman said.
Hurriyat leadership will extend its full support to every serious effort aimed at resolving Kashmir dispute so that peace prevails in the region and bloodshed stops, Mirwaiz added.