Pakistani groups lament Hurriyat split
12 September 2003
The Hindustan Times
Indo-Asian News Service
Islamabad: Pakistani political and religious groups have 'regretted' the split in Jammu and Kashmir's All-Party Hurriyat Conference, terming it as 'dangerous for the cause of Kashmir's struggle'.At the same time, they have expressed confidence that the Hurriyat would soon be able to resolve its differences.'This is a severe jerk for the Kashmir movement. We hope that the Hurriyat leaders would be able to overcome their differences soon,' Jamaat-e-Islami chief Qazi Hussain Ahmed told IANS.When asked if his party was in contact with its counterpart in Kashmir, which is a leading member of the Hurriyat, Ahmed said: 'We are observing the situation... this is something regrettable but we are hopeful of rapprochement.'Ahmed held 'New Delhi backed' politicians in Kashmir responsible for the split, saying: 'By doing so India is creating difficulties for itself... they (the Indians) will have to accept the demand of the Kashmiris one day... the sooner the better.'Information Minister Sheikh Rashid Ahmed said the split was not good for the people of Kashmir.'Hurriyat leaders should resolve their differences otherwise it would create a serious dent in the morale of the Kashmiri people,' Ahmed held.Former prime minister of Pakistan-administered Kashmir Abdul Qayyum Khan said the split was setback for Kashmiris living on both sides of the Line of Control (LOC) that divides Kashmir between India and Pakistan.'We want to see the Hurriyat leadership united and harmonious,' he said, describing the split as 'worst (that could happen to the) Kashmir movement.'He said that Kashmiris living on the Pakistani side expect the Hurriyat leadership would demonstrate and 'establish complete unity and solidarity in their ranks by sinking their differences.'Javed Hashmi, acting president of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz, hoped the Hurriyat leaders would soon come together again.Hafiz Saeed, former chief of Lashker-e-Taiba said: 'We hope the Hurriyat leadership will not add to the miseries of the Kashmiri people.'