Nawaz Sharif pledges restraint over Kashmir

By AFP
Published: August 14, 2013
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Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif waves to the crowd as he leaves after attending a flag raising ceremony to mark the country's 67th Independence Day in Islamabad August 14, 2013. PHOTO: REUTERS

Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif waves to the crowd as he leaves after attending a flag raising ceremony to mark the country's 67th Independence Day in Islamabad August 14, 2013. PHOTO: REUTERS

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif pledged Wednesday to respond to rising tensions in disputed Kashmir with “restraint and responsibility” as officials accused India of killing another civilian by firing across the border.

Nawaz Sharif said it was vital to defuse the recent escalation of tension in the Himalayan territory.

Skirmishes have flared across the heavily-militarised Line of Control (LoC), the de facto border in Kashmir, since five Indian soldiers were killed last week in an ambush which India blamed on the Pakistan army.

In the latest incident to raise the temperature between the neighbours, Pakistani military officials said “unprovoked Indian shelling” across the LoC had killed a 60-year-old man and injured his teenage daughter.

After talks with the visiting UN chief Ban Ki-moon, Sharif said the rising antagonism was a matter of great concern.

“Pakistan will continue to respond to the situation with restraint and responsibility in the hope that steps will be taken by India to reduce tensions,” he said at a joint news conference with Ban.

“We have to defuse tension and de-escalate the situation. Our objective is peace. For that, what we need is more diplomacy.”

The two sides agreed to a ceasefire along the LoC in November 2003, but there have been sporadic clashes in Kashmir with each side accusing the other of violations.

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Reader Comments (59)

  • Syed A. Mateen
    Aug 14, 2013 - 2:24PM

    Unless the dispute of occupied Kashmir is not settled, the relations between Pakistan and India cannot be normalized.

    People who think that if Pakistan and India will increase bilateral trade and this how the relations between Pakistan and India will be normalized, I think that they are living in fool’s paradise.

    Pakistan has only one point agenda.

    Give the right of self determination to the Kashmiris of occupied Kashmir and the day India will hold refrendum for the occupied Kashmiris, whether they want to remain a part of India or they want a seperate state, the results of the referendum will decide the relations between Pakistan and India, once and for all.

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  • Hedgefunder
    Aug 14, 2013 - 2:41PM

    Neither Country has political ability to cede their position in regards to this land locked terrain, nor can they afford to do so, as it would be political suicide.
    So the situation is likely to continue in stalemate for long time to come.
    The question is will Pakistan still exists in its current form in next decade, due its internal crises ?

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  • js
    Aug 14, 2013 - 3:12PM

    @Syed A. Mateen:
    Bring the debate forward, India will not agree to any of your points, what should be done then.

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  • 1947
    Aug 14, 2013 - 3:25PM

    @js : “Bring the debate forward, India will not agree to any of your points, what should be done then”

    Mr. JS, if india will not agree to any of the points said by Mr. Syed A. Mateen, then India will continue to suffer until it will be geographically remodelled once again like 1947.

    Recommend

  • Shahzad
    Aug 14, 2013 - 3:29PM

    No matter what you do, Indians won’t talk on these issues. They only know the one language and that is keep kicking them in Kashmir till the time they get out from there.

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  • Syed A. Mateen
    Aug 14, 2013 - 3:32PM

    @js

    India and the UN both knew about the core issue of occupied Kashmir which is lingering on since 1947, but India is intentionally ignoring the demands of Kashmiris of occupied Kashmir.

    Why Kashimirs living in occupied Kashmir are been killed by Indian Army?

    The only reason is that Kashmiris living in occupied Kashmir are asking for self determination since Pakistan and India became independent states.

    The Kashmir which is attached to Pakistan has its own legislative assembly. It has its own President and the Prime Minister and the legislators.

    Pakistan has given freedom to the Kashmir and its people which are attached with Pakistan, but India does not want to give the same freedom to the Kashmiris living in occupied Kashmir.

    This is why Kashmir attached to Pakistan is called as “Azad Kashmir” and the Kashmir attached to India is called as “Occupied Kashmir”.

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  • Asif Butt
    Aug 14, 2013 - 4:01PM

    @Hedgefunder:
    That is no new question.
    People like you dream on and renew this question every decade.

    Still people like you dont wake up.After so many decades nothing happened , the mighty US couldnt wipe out some militants from Afghanistan , and people like you dream and waste their emotions waiting for a whole state to just vanish.

    Pity you all…Recommend

  • js
    Aug 14, 2013 - 4:08PM

    @Syed A. Mateen:

    bring the debate forward, India will not agree with any of your points, what now ?

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  • Strategic Asset
    Aug 14, 2013 - 4:08PM

    @Syed A. Mateen: But the Kashmir you claim to be “Azad Kashmir” fares poorly on all freedom parameters compared to Jammu & Kashmir. Moreover what you claim to be an independent government in Azad Kashmir is just an eyewash and the whole world knows that. Do they have a constitution? Do they have their own military? Can they have their own foreign policy? Nope. Everyone knows that the entire territory is controlled by the Pakistan army.

    Brad Adams the Asia director at Human
    Rights Watch has said in 2006:
    Although ‘azad’ means ‘free,’ the
    residents of Azad Kashmir are anything
    but, The Pakistani authorities govern
    Azad Kashmir with strict controls on
    basic freedoms.

    Also it appears you have not read the UN Resolution which everyone knows has been superceded by the Simla Agreement. There is no option in it for Azadi. It is only India or Pakistan. There are other demerits to your erroneous and convoluted post that others more patient than I may answer.

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  • js
    Aug 14, 2013 - 4:24PM

    @1947:
    It is established that you cannot enforce any of your demands.
    India will suffer ???
    What are you talking about, we agree to our Army destroying every man, woman, child and their dog, in Kashmir, if that is what it will take. No worries, no suffering.
    We will not give Kashmir up.
    We all know the power that remodelled the sub-continent in 1947, it was the British Empire, and they were an Empire then, we also know what power remodelled Pakistan in 1971. What exactly are you today that you claim you can remodel India ???
    can we please deal in real terms.

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  • js
    Aug 14, 2013 - 4:28PM

    @Syed A. Mateen:
    correction ———you call it Azad and occupied———-we don’t. We just call it Kashmir and claim all of it.
    What now ???

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  • kamalji
    Aug 14, 2013 - 4:42PM

    Now nothing will happen, its too late. Pak is wasting time in spreading terrorism and India is sailing smoothly economically and culturally. Kashmir is integral part of India and will remain so, now in 21 century Pak can do nothing other than ceasefire violations. Pak people are filled with hatred from childhood against India through all levels of media, education, stories, by army and govt, in contrast Indian education doesnt include any such thing. Terrorism is eating pak, and Army and Govt is fooling people with false promises and stories and wasting their youth time and energy which can be used in development. And they are doing it to reduce pain by India in two defeats.

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  • kamalji
    Aug 14, 2013 - 4:44PM

    Nothing will happen, and Kashmir is integral part of India and will remain so Period. Other than ceasefire violations Pakistan can do nothing.

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  • Aug 14, 2013 - 4:45PM

    Pakistan can do nothing other than cease fire violations. Period. Kashmir is in India forever.

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  • Gaurav
    Aug 14, 2013 - 4:54PM

    Why Pakistan attacked Kashmir first in 1947?

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  • vasan
    Aug 14, 2013 - 4:57PM

    Syed A Mateen : The candidate before being sworn in as a premier of the so called “Azad Kashmir”: has to take a oath of allegiance to Pakistan. Is that then “Azad” as u claim.
    The lands in Azad Kashmir have been swamped by Punjabis but in Indian side of Kashmir, no non-kashmiri can buy a property,

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  • Salman Ali
    Aug 14, 2013 - 5:05PM

    Bravo PM! That’s maturity. We need to defuse tensions and stop spoilers on both side from ruining all the progress. Pakistanis and Indians need to understand that we’re permanent neighbours and no amount of hatred can change this fact. Peace is the only solution.

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  • Aiman Kay
    Aug 14, 2013 - 5:13PM

    I appreciate NS for being bold to say which no one wants to listen. Escalation on the border is in no one’s interest. Indian and Pak can spend all this money on human development.

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  • Xnain
    Aug 14, 2013 - 5:13PM

    Its a good move by Pakistan to use diplomacy and thus create diplomatic goodwill especially when SG UN is in Pakistan. Diplomacy is the best weapon is the age of globalization.

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  • Mian Mitthu
    Aug 14, 2013 - 5:20PM

    @js:
    Just as the power of Empire faded away so will the imperial ambitions of the power that remodeled 1971 will fade away.
    50% of Britain was not malnourished yet the empire is no more as a matter of fact Britain was economically well off when the empire fell apart. Nor we’re more than half of the population living below an the poverty line with no toilet or running water. Such “powers” are very vulnerable.

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  • polpot
    Aug 14, 2013 - 5:23PM

    Post Kargil the only option with Pakistan is to ….
    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
    hold Kahsmir Solidarity Day every Year.
    ( and to debate vigourously on chat baords ;))

    Recommend

  • Surya
    Aug 14, 2013 - 5:38PM

    Make the Kashmir Valley “Panun Kashmir” for us Pandits who need to be brought back to the valley.

    This area can be shared with those converts who are willing to live in peace with us. And those want “azadi” can go live in “azad kashmir”. Finish partition once and for all.

    Recommend

  • Aug 14, 2013 - 5:44PM

    He is a peace lover.
    .
    May we have more people like him, Amen!

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  • Hedgefunder
    Aug 14, 2013 - 6:19PM

    @Asif Butt:
    Firstly, I am not under any illusions as to development of this relationship, as history suggests otherwise due to Pakistan’s action and policies over past six decades !
    Why not try and have self examination of your own leaders and their actions over that period of time?
    Just look around in the region as to progress, economic development taking place, while Pakistan seems to be in reverse drive, since at least last two decades
    Take a closer look at the current internal security related crises that Pakistan is facing daily in its own towns and cities, has anybody actually got any solution for that ?
    Ever wondered, where these elements came from or created by ?
    The answer is there, but does anyone actually have will to fact the facts ?
    Happy Independence Day. May it be a peaceful one for the people.

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  • Shah
    Aug 14, 2013 - 6:27PM

    When something happen on Line of Actual Control, India throw its anger on Line of Control

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  • Shah
    Aug 14, 2013 - 6:35PM

    Mr. Hedgefunder
    On day when USA and its allies will out from Afghanistan, Pakistan will start progress. Its because of these consulates of India and offices of CIA on our western border that Pakistan is in defensive condition. Our western borders are not secure because of insurgents trained by India or CIA. I remember the beheading of innocent people in Swat valley by these insurgents in the name of Taliban.

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  • Np
    Aug 14, 2013 - 6:37PM

    @Salman Ali:
    The PM says this without being able to exercise control over his army. The Punjab assembly led by his brother says aggressive things as the national assembly and as does Ch. Nisar. This good cop bad cop strategy fools no one any more.

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  • Np
    Aug 14, 2013 - 6:38PM

    Can you get your buddy Hafiz Saeed to exercise restraint? The Eid namaaz he led in Lahore certainly showed no restraint and talked about armed jihad.

    Recommend

  • Hedgefunder
    Aug 14, 2013 - 6:40PM

    @1947:
    I actually like the concept of your ” re-modelling ” ! Its obvious how you remodelled in 1971, furthermore its obvious that this concept is also being used in present day Pakistan, to continue your remodelling !
    You can’t even deal with your immediate internal security concerns, which are destroying your basic fabric of society daily, and you are talking about dealing with the region !
    Its time for serious self examination, otherwise you may not have an nation in a decade in its current form !

    Recommend

  • Hedgefunder
    Aug 14, 2013 - 6:50PM

    @Strategic Asset:
    Ever read any reports of Human Rights Violations of Pakistan in general or of Baluchistan ?
    Please don’t patronise, the facts are there and its not good reading either !
    Does words like Minorities, Hindus, Sikhs, Ahmedis Christians and now new addition the Shias too , all these communities basic rights are being violated daily !

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  • rp
    Aug 14, 2013 - 7:26PM

    until Pakistan leave Kashmir as such nothing will happen now we have complete control over Kashmir

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  • Dr.A.K.Tewari
    Aug 14, 2013 - 7:46PM

    Listen what your newly elected prime minister is saying . l’Be calm and quite on Kashmir issue ” No more Kashmir solidarity day is required The issue will be only discussed across the table . I hope NBC will also follow the wishes of the prime minister .

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  • Dr.A.K.Tewari
    Aug 14, 2013 - 7:48PM

    Listen what your newly elected prime minister is saying . ‘Be calm and quite on Kashmir issue ” No more Kashmir solidarity day is required The issue will be only discussed across the table . I hope NBC will also follow the wishes of the prime minister .

    Recommend

  • iqbal kasim
    Aug 14, 2013 - 8:11PM

    youth of pakisthan to join the terror camp so that we can control the pakisthan ,

    Recommend

  • Nero
    Aug 14, 2013 - 8:17PM

    @ Mateen ji:

    “Pakistan has only one point agenda. Give the right of self determination to the Kashmiris of occupied Kashmir.”

    1947 to 1971: Pakistan wanted to occupy/capture/win whole of Kashmir militarily.
    1972 to app. 2003: Pakistan wanted to “win” Kashmir through “jihad”.
    2003 to now: Pakistan realized that first two are not going to happen, so it started talking about “self-determination”.

    You have one half of J&K. Why not try giving self-determination to them first? Or may be just follow the first condition of the UN resolution, the one every Pakistani loves to talk about but fails to read – complete withdrawal of Pakistani forces from all of J&K.

    BTW: Happy Independence Day. Let us please make something worth bragging about what we have, before we claim what others have!

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  • Strategic Asset
    Aug 14, 2013 - 8:31PM

    @Hedgefunder: Please read my post again. Believe it or not, we are on the same side.

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  • naeem khan Manhattan,Ks
    Aug 14, 2013 - 8:42PM

    @Strategic Asset: How could you be so wrong? Simla agreement has nothing to do with the UN resolution which your own PM Nehru agreed to it and it is time that a plebiscite is held and let the people of Kashmir decide their own fate. Why India is so afraid of plebiscite, after all your country has agreed to it to the whole world in the UN. Why not bring in some international news team and let them investigate the atrocities of Indian security forces in Kashmir, more then 10,000 Kashmiris has been killed , hundreds have been maimed and raped. Let us not forget the rapes of Kashmiri women by the security forces, these are the facts, can you deny it. It is a like a marriage, if one partner is not happy then let it go, East Pakistan should be an example for the Indians. East Bengalis did not want to remain in one Pakistan, they opted to go separate way, and it should be clear to you Indians that you can’t keep people subjugated and murder them day in and day out because they want to have their own way, eventually they will go their own way, By the way one family of Sheikh Abdullah has been in power since 1948,and you call it some kind of democracy.

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  • True Indian
    Aug 14, 2013 - 8:44PM

    @Syed A. Mateen:
    Lets have a referendum in balochistan….

    Recommend

  • np
    Aug 14, 2013 - 9:17PM

    @Hedgefunder: @Strategic Asset was resopnding to someone. The words of the person he responded to are what you are racting to rather than his/her own comment. Please review @Strategic Asset’s comment once more.Recommend

  • Tipu
    Aug 14, 2013 - 9:24PM

    @Hedgefunder:
    Ever heard about babri mosque, Gujarat riots, naxelitis , Tamil Nadu , Asam problems, Khalistan and the list goes on. The point is dont pick up on others weakness but to build bridges look for common grounds .

    Recommend

  • Hedgefunder
    Aug 14, 2013 - 9:59PM

    @Tipu:
    Yes ! I have never claimed that India is perfect society, nor that there has never been history in regards to communal violence, however the constitution is still being respected and not changed on whims of those in power.
    Do not forget that in India there is larger Muslim community than Pakistan’s total population and yet they too flourish, participate and drive the economy forward.
    I was at no time looking for weakness of other, but pointing out facts as to the amendments to the constitution of Pakistan, which sadly have left the minorities in an vulnerable position, as is the case with your “Blasphemy Law” !
    Show me a case where any citizen of India who is not entitle to vote or hold passport, like you have Ahmedis ?
    Don’t pick naxelites , as you already have mother of all these in your domain operating freely on daily basis , while your state watches and the innocents are maimed !
    This in my book is first stage of failing nation, remember what Somalia was like in mid to late 80’s ?
    Rest assure I was there, and saw it as an observer and could not act !
    Same again in Bosnia, again, I witnessed the same pattern and learned new word, “Ethnic Cleansing” while we watch in front of our eyes, as there was no mandate in place !
    So please don’t teach me about issues related to India, as its not perfect, but certainly thousand times more accommodating and tolerating than Land of Pure !

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  • Strategic Asset
    Aug 14, 2013 - 10:03PM

    @naeem khan Manhattan,Ks: For a long time, I used to think that you lived in Manhattan, NYC and not the grass fields of Kansas.
    .
    Please read the UN non-binding resolution that Nehru put forward in the UN and also read the Simla Agreement in full. If you still cannot understand, I can only blame your education. India is defintely not afraid of anything, not at this moment for sure unlike years past as she has history on her side.
    .
    ET: Please allow my reply as he has directed his question to me.

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  • Strategic Asset
    Aug 14, 2013 - 10:08PM

    @Tipu: Please do not take the alias of Tipu Sultan who is from my state, misguided in certain matters though he was.
    .
    Tamil Nadu: What’s going on there? I simply fail to understand.
    Babri Mosque: I am not a Hindu, but that mosque was called Masjid-i-Janamsthan and belonged to
    Hindus anyway.
    Khalistan: Yeah, you definitely should know about it because Pakistan fomented it, but it is dead and gone.
    .
    Bottom line is we in India are nothing like Pakistan. Pakistan reminds me of how India used to be when I was a kid, some 20 years ago.

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  • Hedgefunder
    Aug 14, 2013 - 10:10PM

    @Strategic Asset:
    I acknowledge. Thank you .
    However the issue should not just be Kashmir, but whole nation and its people, this is called nation building.
    However this Nation has neither learned any lessons nor has any intensions to do so, as its not in the interest of the elite !
    They forget the rest of 170 million odd people, and they keep them in darkness as to the facts or education and reality too !
    Hope you had a good independence day.

    Recommend

  • Kaleem
    Aug 14, 2013 - 10:17PM

    We are more than happy to have referendum in Balochistan, if UN pressurizes us like it did to India in 1948, and Indian PM accepted it. We can also agree to it, if indian agencies stop playing their dirty games in Balochistan and let people live there in peace.

    Recommend

  • Strategic Asset
    Aug 14, 2013 - 10:40PM

    @Hedgefunder: Buddy, my Independence Day doesn’t start until tomorrow :)

    Recommend

  • Hedgefunder
    Aug 14, 2013 - 10:52PM

    @Kaleem:
    Yes but sadly they will sell the chunk of land to the neighbour, in your case to Iran, as in Kashmir’s place, it was to China, and hence the rule of any UN guided motions were destroyed !
    I really wonder as to how many people actually know the facts as to this issue today.
    UN can simply not get involved until that act is honoured, and that will never happen, as Pakistan has already sold a piece of Kashmir, from its original form.
    That’s the main reason for this stalemate, and rest of the charade !
    Personally I doubt that Pakistan can actually hold a mandate in their Kashmir, with current crises whereby the local admin can not even pay its employees, and yet the Indian side is developing economically quite well !

    Recommend

  • Pashtunyar
    Aug 14, 2013 - 11:05PM

    @Strategic Asset:

    Unlike IOK, people in POK (Azad kashmir) have never protested against Pakistan..Now you would say its due to heavy handed policies of the pak authorities! Convenient…

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  • Alann
    Aug 14, 2013 - 11:13PM

    Kaleem: “We are more than happy to have referendum in Balochistan, if UN pressurizes us like it did to India in 1948, and Indian PM accepted it. We can also agree to it, if indian agencies stop playing their dirty games in Balochistan and let people live there in peace.”

    Are you insane? Balochistan is currently a state inside the sovereign (cough) nation of Pakistan, right? And you are saying a referendum can’t be held inside Balochistan because India is interfering?! Pakistan can’t hold a referendum on its own territory? Or do you happen to have doubts whether Balochistan belongs to Pakistan or not?

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  • Strategic Asset
    Aug 14, 2013 - 11:24PM

    @Syed A. Mateen: This is why Kashmir attached to Pakistan is called as “Azad Kashmir” and the Kashmir attached to India is called as “Occupied Kashmir”.
    .
    Same way as North Korea is called “Democratic People’s Republic of Korea: and South Korea is called “Republic of Korea”. What’s in a name? Diddly squat.

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  • Tipu
    Aug 14, 2013 - 11:59PM

    Thanks for highlighting all our problems in Pakistan. Rest assured we are strong nation and will rise again. As much as I wanted to have constructive discussion , the ill motivated anti Pakistan bashing from my neighbors spoiled it all. Happy Independence Day

    Recommend

  • Strategic Asset
    Aug 15, 2013 - 12:05AM

    @Pashtunyar: @Strategic Asset:
    Unlike IOK, people in POK (Azad kashmir) have never protested against Pakistan..Now you would say its due to heavy handed policies of the pak authorities! Convenient…

    .
    That is because PoK citizens know under penalty of life that they would immediately be labelled “Indian Agents” if they protest against Pakistan. Moreover, they are do not have freedom as I mentioned in my previous post. If they do not have freedom, how do they protest?
    .
    ET: Please allow as the question is directed to me.

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  • Hedgefunder
    Aug 15, 2013 - 12:19AM

    @Strategic Asset:
    so does mine, however I am UK based and looking forward to attending High Commissioner’s Lunch party.
    Yet we will pray and hope for peace in the region .
    Wars are never solution, but sometimes necessary too !

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  • Kaleem
    Aug 15, 2013 - 12:21AM

    @Alann, Balochistan is very much part of pakistan and it will remain so, unlike the wishes of few. I was just being sarcastic there, the point is, stop funding tribal leaders inside balochistan, a common baloch does not even think of any liberation, unlike a common indian occupied kashmiri. Its indian media which portrays so, I am amazed how excited indians become about prospects of separate balochistan which does not even exist. Just stop the interference in Balochistan and ask Balochis what they want, you will explore a sad reality which you do not want to even think about.

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  • Manoj Joshi India
    Aug 15, 2013 - 12:22PM

    Wisdom/Sanity along with a diplomatic maturity is quite perceptible with regard to Indo-Pak relationship. The recent developments of killing of Indian soldiers and cross border firings have had the desired moderate response without the unwarranted hysteria. The people as well as the governments of the two neighbouring countries desire for peace, harmony and amity and sincerely desire to promote the trust between neighbours. The situation needs to be converted to an opportunity.

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  • Gaurav
    Aug 15, 2013 - 3:29PM

    What is the status of AJK internationally, no one recognizes it because Pakistan itself does not want any independent Kashmir, it wants to gobble Kashmir, where as India liberated Bangladesh and Bangladesh is recognized internationally.

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  • Dr,A,K,Tewari
    Aug 16, 2013 - 8:10PM

    @ Gaurav , NS got the blessings of Banki Moon and now it seems to me that the new gont. will do what the world community
    expects from NS on issues related to terrorism and regional peace . NS. will get all support if he followed the wishes of Banki Moon and will get success to complete his term without being toppled by the army .He as a seasoned politician can sail the nation in a turbulant sea . Otherwise condition of Egipt is before him .

    Recommend

  • Dr,A,K,Tewari
    Aug 16, 2013 - 8:11PM

    NS got the blessings of Banki Moon and now it seems to me that the new gont. will do what the world community
    expects from NS on issues related to terrorism and regional peace . NS. will get all support if he followed the wishes of Banki Moon and will get success to complete his term without being toppled by the army .He as a seasoned politician can sail the nation in a turbulant sea . Otherwise condition of Egipt is before him .

    Recommend

  • Dr,A,K,Tewari
    Aug 16, 2013 - 8:11PM

    NS got the blessings of Banki Moon and now it seems to me that the new gont. will do what the world community
    expects from NS on issues related to terrorism and regional peace . NS. will get all support if he followed the wishes of Banki Moon and will get success to complete his term without being toppled by the army .He as a seasoned politician can sail the nation in a turbulant sea . Otherwise condition of Egipt is before him .Recommend

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