MUZAFFARABAD, Pakistan: Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif Friday said Kashmir issue was a test for current leadership of Pakistan and India and peoples of both countries could not prosper and progress, until the lingering issue was resolved.
Expressing optimism on initiation of bilateral dialogue process in the days ahead, the Prime Minister said resolution of all issues lies in mutual dialogue and added both India and Pakistan would have to think about the well-being and progress of their peoples.
The Prime Minister was speaking at the joint session of Azad Jammu and Kashmir Legislative Assembly and Kashmir Council, in connection with the Kashmir Solidarity Day.
AJK Speaker Sardar Ghulam Sadiq Khan chaired proceedings of the joint session that was also attended by AJK President Sardar Muhammad Yaqoob Khan, AJK Prime Minister Chaudhry Abdul Majeed, Minister for Kashmir Affairs Chaudhry Barjees Tahir, Minister for Information and Broadcasting Senator Pervaiz Rashid, Advisor to the PM on Political Affairs Dr. Asif Kirmani and Chairman Special Parliamentary Committee on Kashmir, Maulana Fazlur Rehman.
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif said South Asia required a new vision and thinking and the history was once again calling for resolution of bilateral issues for the future generation.
He said Pakistan did try to give a new vision to South Asia in order to ensure peace in the region.
The Prime Minister said Pakistan has assured cooperation to India on all issues including terrorism, adding no one could understand peace better other than Pakistan, which itself had been the target and victim of terrorism.
“We want peace, not only for Pakistan but for the entire region and Kashmir is also part of the region”, he said and added peace is also Kashmiris’ right and no one can deny the right of self-determination to people of Jammu and Kashmir.
The Prime Minister said differences among countries were somewhat natural but Kashmir’s resolution was a test case for leadership of both countries.
He said Kashmir was a permanent part of national policy and no Pakistani could ignore Kashmir as this relationship was part of their history, geography, region, culture and realization of relationship among the people.