The veteran Kashmiri Hurriyet leader, Syed Ali Geelani, has been invited to visit Pakistan by Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar.
According to Kashmir Media Service, the spokesperson of Geelani’s forum, Ayaz Akbar, in a statement issued in Srinagar said that the Pakistani High Commissioner in New Delhi, Shahid Malik, along with his associates visited the veteran leader at his Malviya Nagar residence in New Delhi. Malik had come up to formally invite Geelani to visit Pakistan.
The spokesperson added that the decision on accepting the invitation of Pakistan would be taken in Majlis-e-Shoora of the forum. He said that during the meeting, Geelani appealed to Pakistan to step up diplomatic efforts to apprise the world about human rights violations being perpetrated by Indian forces in the occupied Kashmir and to build pressure on India for resolving the issue.
“Pakistan has always supported Kashmiris at political, moral and diplomatic level,” Geelani said during the meeting. He called for inclusion of Kashmiri leadership in talks, saying that bilateral engagements between India and Pakistan had proven futile in the past and the dialogue process could be made result-oriented by involving the Kashmiri leaders.
Meanwhile, Malik assured the veteran leader that Pakistan would continue to support the Kashmir’s struggle for securing their inalienable right to self-determination.
Published in The Express Tribune, February 27th, 2012.