Kashmir Lifeline Of Pakistan, Says Shahbaz

Kashmir Lifeline Of Pakistan, Says Shahbaz

17 April 2012
The News International


Lahore: Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif has said Kashmir is the lifeline of Pakistan which has been kept separated by force from the Islamic republic. He was addressing a joint press conference along with Kashmir Committee Chairman Maulana Fazlur Rahman at Chief Minister's Secretariat here Tuesday. He said millions of Kashmiris have sacrificed their lives but the UN resolutions for resolving this dispute have not been implemented and the Kashmiris are still deprived of their basic right to self-determination. He said a durable peace cannot be achieved in the subcontinent without solution to Kashmir problem and resolution of this core issue is the top priority of Pakistan. Shahbaz said he had recently made it clear to India, during inaugural ceremony of integrated checkpost at Attari, that the region might face disastrous consequences if Kashmir and water issues were not settled fairly. He said no progress can be made without solving the basic issues between the two countries. He said, 'We support commerce and trade between the two neighbouring countries. However, it depends upon us how we live together.' Shahbaz said Pakistan has always extended diplomatic and moral support to Kashmiris and not hesitated from any sacrifice for the solution of Kashmir problem but this issue is still pending. He said that we will have to set our own house in order before negotiating with India. Maulana said the meeting of Kashmir Committee is being held in Lahore for this first time and will also hold its meetings in other provinces. He said there is consensus that only a stable Pakistan can help Kashmiri people and any internal unrest and economic instability can disappoint the Kashmiris. He said Pakistan has been entangled on its western frontiers during the last one decade due to which Kashmir issue has gone into the background. He said India wants to suppress the struggle of Kashmiris by force and is committing atrocities on them on the basis of its draconian laws. The Kashmir Committee chairman made an appeal to the world to take notice of Indian atrocities and barbarities against Kashmiris. Similarly, the Kashmiri leadership should also be taken into confidence regarding this process. He said all our efforts should be directed towards solution to Kashmir issue. Fazl said Jamiat-e-Ulema-e-Islam supported Indian prime minister Atal Behari Vajpayee's visit to Lahore at the invitation of former prime minister Nawaz Sharif. Earlier, a meeting of Kashmir Committee was held at Chief Minister's Secretariat, under the chairmanship of Maulana Fazlur Rahman. Addressing the meeting, Shahbaz said Kashmiris have rewritten history through their supreme sacrifices in the struggle for freedom. Maulana said Pakistan has a principled and just stance over Kashmir issue which is recognised by the whole world including the UN.