Draft for resolution of Kashmir conflict ‘in the works,’ says Pakistani minister
ISLAMABAD: Pakistan’s Federal Minister for Human Rights Dr. Shireen Mazari said on Wednesday that she has a plan to resolve the long-standing Kashmir conflict between India and Pakistan, the model for which “is still in the works.”
“We will circulate it among all the stakeholders, including the prime minister and Cabinet ministers. If the draft is approved, we will move it forward,” she told Arab News without giving any details.
Mazari, an expert on defense-related matters and the former director-general of the Institute of Strategic Studies, had said earlier this week — during a Pakistani televised political talk show — that she has drafted a proposal which would be presented to the government within a week’s time.
Minister for information Fawad Chaudhry made no mention of the proposed draft during a media briefing on Tuesday following the third Cabinet meeting chaired by Prime Minister Imran Khan. Chaudhry’s office failed to provide any comment when contacted by Arab News.
Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi, who will be leading Pakistan’s delegation to the UN General Assembly in New York, refused to comment on the matter during a press conference.
However, responding to a question on whether he would be meeting his Indian counterpart, External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj, on the sidelines of the UNGA, Qureshi said: “So far, there is no such meeting scheduled. I will not hesitate if such a possibility arises.”
Relations between the South Asian nuclear rivals have been tense over the past few years and formal dialogue and confidence building measures remain suspended.
“The situation is not conducive even if (Imran) Khan wants to move towards mending ties with India,” Dr. Zafar Jaspal, an international relations expert, told Arab News.
He added that the Indian general elections are scheduled for May next year and Prime Minister Narendra Modi “cannot afford to lose the vote of Hindu nationalists and when he focuses on them, he needs to tow an anti-Muslim, anti-Pakistan narrative.”
“Maybe after May 2019 things might change and as a result confidence building measures between Pakistan and India may start, but Islamabad should not be too optimistic.”