LoC skirmishes: Civil society voices concern

Urges India, Pakistan To Strengthen Peace Process

NISAR AHMED THOKAR

Islamabad, Jan 13: Voicing its concern over the recent skirmishes between Indian and Pakistani troops along the Line of Control (LoC) in Jammu and Kashmir, civil society representatives here Sunday said the tension on the LoC will have adverse effect on the lives of the common masses living on both sides of the divide.
 “Besides having a negative impact on the lives of natives across the divide, the situation leads to uncertainties on the future of Kashmir-specific peace process,” the civil society representatives said during a round-table conference in Islamabad.
 Hailing the Confidence Building Measures (CBMs) taken by the governments of India and Pakistan, the participants observed that the ceasefire in 2003 and subsequent openings for the travel and trade were significant steps towards peace building between the two countries. They urged leaders of both the countries to respect the years-long truce accord to avoid tension in the region. “Kashmiri people look at the CBMs as a way forward to move towards the settlement of issues,” they said.
 Urging the government of India to stop fencing the Line of Control, they said that Kashmiris on both sides of the LoC have expressed their resentment and anger against the move. “Such steps are intended to curtail free movement across the LoC,” they said.
 The participants through a unanimous resolution called for de-escalation on the LoC and restoring confidence in the peace process. “The process must be sustained in the interest of all and advanced beyond the set of CBMs to give the natives a hope for a better tomorrow,” the resolution said.
 Pertinently, the RTC was hosted by former ambassador Arif Kamal and co-hosted by veteran columnist Ershad Mehmood. Aisha Jehangir Khan, Human Rights/ Humanitarian Worker from Gilgit-Baltistan, Altaf Wani Director International Institute of Kashmir Affairs (KIIR) Islamabad, Dr. Naseema Seema Jogazi PaK Women for Peace Organization, Dr. ShaheenAkhtar Associate Prof. National Defense University, Islamabad, FarzanaYayoob Minister for Social Welfare & Women Development, PaK, Khawaja Farooq Ahmad leader of Peoples Party and ex-Minister, Muhammad Ahmad Shaikh lawyer and civil society activist, Muhammad Farooq Rahman Chairman JK Peoples Freedom League, Nayyar Malik, President PaK Women for Peace Organization, Sardar Usman Attique, Youth leader of Muslim Conference PaK, Shah Ghulam Qadir, Secretary General Pakistan Muslim League (N) PaK, Surriya Kamal, civil society activist, Tariq Masud, Chairman Centre for Peace, Development and Reforms (CPDR) PaK, Waqas Ali Kausar, civil society activist, Zulfiqar Abbasi, former President Jammu and Kashmir Joint Chamber of Commerce and Industry attended the conference.

Lastupdate on : Sun, 13 Jan 2013 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Sun, 13 Jan 2013 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Mon, 14 Jan 2013 00:00:00 IST




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