Pakistan Sees Glimmer Of A Resolution

17 June 2009
Daily News & Analysis

Islamabad: American pressure on India to resume stalled peace talks with Pakistan and New Delhi's statement that it is looking at reducing troops in J&K have rekindled hopes in Islamabad that there might be a serious attempt at resolving the dispute.Officials and analysts say the meeting between Pakistani President Asif Zardari and Indian PM Manmohan Singh on June 15 happened only because the US convinced India to resume the composite dialogue. Shamshad Ahmad Khan, a former Pakistani diplomat, said the Pakistani establishment has convinced Washington that normalising India-Pak ties and resolving the Kashmir dispute were pre-requisites to succeed in the war on terror. He added that the Indian government's recent plans to reduce troops in Kashmir should be seen in that perspective. Ijaz Hussain, an analyst, said that the US has, for the first time, played initiator. 'Obama realises that the US cannot win the war in Afghanistan without Pakistan's cooperation. But Pakistan regards India as a greater threat to its security than terrorism. The argument therefore, is that if Kashmir is resolved Pakistan would cooperate in Afghanistan,' he said. Najam Sethi, editor of the Daily Times, said a new dialogue is needed to resolve the dispute. 'In the past, the two have tried to undermine each other's domestic scene about which they must exchange views frankly. Once assurances of non-interference are given and fear of military attack is removed, the non-core issues will be ready for resolution, and Pakistan and India will be ready to talk sensibly about more key matters such as water. The core issue, as Pakistan's policy on Kashmir says, can be resolved only through peaceful means,' he said.