No compromise on dignity for Kashmir solution: Musharraf
31 January 2007
The News International
Islamabad: President Gen Pervez Musharraf said on Wednesday Pakistan would never compromise on its honour and dignity for resolving Jammu and Kashmir dispute with India, and continue to raise its voice for the negotiated settlement of other disputes facing the Muslim Ummah. Addressing the Pakistani community after inaugurating a new building of the Pakistan embassy, he said Pakistan is on the forefront for peace and development at domestic, regional and international levels. About the Kashmir issue, President Musharraf said that Pakistan was making all possible efforts to resolve this core issue, as it believes 'it will help boost economic development and improve socio-economic life of the people of the two countries'. He said by developing relations through the confidence-building measures, Pakistan and India are focussing on dispute resolutions and added the two countries cannot afford confrontation. He ruled out military option for settling the Kashmir issue. Musharraf said his visit to the Middle East and the Southeast Asia is aimed at raising a strong and credible voice to resolve Palestine dispute, bringing an end to the unrest in Lebanon and Iraq. He said his fresh initiative for bringing peace into the Middle East will also avert spread of unrest in the region. He hoped that his efforts to bring peace would be successful and move ahead for the better future of the region. He urged the Pakistani community to lay greater emphasis on projecting Pakistan's image abroad and reject those elements, who play up negative image of their country for their personal gains. He asked them to work for the overall interest of the country. He said a handful of elements, particularly militant Taliban, have no place in the country, since the people and the government of Pakistan were committed to dealing with them with an iron hand. Taking strong exception over the suicide bombings in Pakistan, the president said Islam does not allow extreme steps and such elements are misguided by the extremist forces in the name of religion. He hoped the Pakistani people will rise to fight against these people collectively to ensure peace and development in the country and the region. He emphasised the Pakistani community to remain committed to its roots and to make maximum efforts to continue on the path to rapid development. The president also spoke high of Pakistan- Indonesia bilateral relations and said these brotherly ties keep growing from strength to strength, thus, meeting the common aspirations of their people. He hoped there will be increased cooperation between the two countries in the field of trade and investment and said the Pakistani community should have major role in this connection. He appreciated Indonesia's support to Pakistan in the 1965 war and said this unequivocal cooperation is still alive in the hearts of people of Pakistan. About opening of new chancellery building, the president hoped it will allow efficient working environment for further development of their bilateral relations. He advised the Pakistani diplomats to serve the people and deliver best possible service to the local community, enabling them to participate in the national development. Earlier, Pakistani ambassador Maj-Gen (retd) Ali Baz in his address traced history of Pakistan-Indonesia relationship and said new avenues are being explored to further strengthen these relations.