Kashmiri separatist leader welcomes Hizbul offer
30 July 2000
New Delhi: Prominent Kashmiri separatist leader and founding father of Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF) Hashim Qureshi today welcomed the ceasefire by Hizbul Mujahideen and subsequent offer of talks by India. In a statement faxed to PTI from Amsterdam, where he is living in exile, Qureshi said ''the present developments in Kashmir were a victory of people''s fervent desire for peace and normalcy.'' Stressing on New Delhi to involve all parties for negotiations, Qureshi, who now heads Jammu and Kashmir Democratic Liberation Party (JKDLP), said ''India should grab the opportunity to ensure permanent peace in the region.'' He said the importance of Hizbul Mujahideen''s ceasefire offer lies in the fact that this group had been fighting for Kashmir''s accession to Pakistan and the group was being provided financial assistance by Mujahideen activists. Qureshi said the peace talks should begin forthwith and their pace should be accelerated.