November 2003 News

Ansari Consents To Advani Proposal, Offers Reunion Of APHC

21 November 2003
News Network International

Srinagar: The Hurriyat Conference led by Moulana Abbas Ansari will enter into negotiations with deputy prime minister and union home minister Lal Krishna Advani after Eid. Finally putting all speculations to rest, the general council meeting convened at Hurriyat headquarters at Rajbagh gave a green signal to chairman Ansari to proceed with the talks. Although the Hurriyat Conference did not make an announcement of the decision, sources told Greater Kashmir the general council members voted 'yes' for talks in reciprocation of the invitation extended by Advani last month. It was also decided that a negotiating committee, and not any individual, would talk with the Center. The committee will be formed in the coming days. However, skeptic of some of the statements by Advani stating that talks with Ansari would concentrate on decentralization of powers only, Hurriyat was conscious enough to announce that talks would be held only on the resolution of Kashmir issue. 'We have decided we will not talk on decentralization or any such thing. Whenever we talk we will talk on the Kashmir dispute and its resolution', former chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq said. He however said Hurriyat will disclose on Friday what transpired at the meeting. Earlier, briefing the media persons after the three hour long meeting, former Hurriyat chairman Abdul Gani Bhat said the meeting was held in a congenial atmosphere and 'every one spoke in clear terms'. 'Either I or Mirwaiz will speak tomorrow', he added. Asked how many parties attended the general council meeting, he quipped, 'all those whom we had invited'. Meanwhile, substantiating reports of under-carpet efforts for reconciliation, former chairman of undivided Hurriyat Mirwaiz Umar Farooq is expected to meet Syed Ali Shah Geelani next week as negotiations within both the camps, and outside, are underway to motivate both parties to at least start talking on some common ground. Sources told Greater Kashmir Mirwaiz Umar had received positive signals from Geelani headed Hurriyat and both the leaders were in constant touch over the past several weeks. The two leaders have in fact agreed in principal to meet formally and the date may materialize next week. The Mirwaiz led Awami Action Committee has already started its home work for the said meet. Moulana Abbas Ansari, in the General Council meeting held Thursday, offered to resign as chairman provided Geelani too agrees to resign as chairman of his faction and comes in the united Hurriyat as a representative of Jama'at-e-Islami. 'I will have no objection whosoever is elected chairman of the united Hurriyat,' Ansari is reported to have announced in the meeting. Sources said although the windows for talks had been apparently shut by both the parties, room for rapprochement was still there and Hurriyat split again dominated the agenda of Thursday's General Council meet of the Ansari Hurriyat although it had been specifically called to spell out strategy for proposed talks with New Delhi.-

 

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