Pakistan ‘will accept’ decision of Kashmiris: Qureshi

Feb 8th, 2019 | Category: Kashmir News

Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi has said “Pakistan will accept” the decision of the people of Kashmir through plebiscite.

Qureshi was responding to the Sky News journalist Dominic Waghorn in an exclusive interview on World View whether Pakistan had plans to “liberate” Kashmir.

Waghorn noted that “there are many in Kashmir who don’t want freedom on Pakistani terms”, to which Qureshi said: “Fine, let’s have a plebiscite. Let the people decide. That’s a commitment, that’s a commitment by India as part of the UN agenda. Give the people the right to self-determination, and whatever they decide, Pakistan will accept.”

The foreign minister also said that the government of Pakistan is ready for talks with India.

The host observed that the back and forth between Pakistan and India had continued “for decades”, and asked why both sides “won’t sit down in the spirit of friendliness”.

“Through your programme, I’m telling the Indians ‘Let’s sit and talk’. I’m ready. Are they?” Qureshi challenged.

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One Comment to “Pakistan ‘will accept’ decision of Kashmiris: Qureshi”

  1. Taufiqul Huque says:

    Basically, my solution to the Kashmir problem is as follows: The UN is asked to arrange a series of four referendums in the entire territory of Jammu and Kashmir, including the Northern Areas of Gilgit and Baltistan. The Security Council will make both Pakistan and India promise, in the court of world opinion, to respect the outcome, on pain of being subjected to Iraq-style sanctions. To begin with, all Pakistani and Indian military forces (including police forces) will be confined to their barracks and UN police will be responsible for enforcing this and for ensuring law and order during the entire process. So an initial quasi-demilitarization will be put into effect.

    Simultaneously, the UN Referendum Authority will then register all eligible voters. The first referendum will ask the following question: Do you want the current line of control to be the international boundary between Pakistan and India? If a majority (strictly defined as 50% plus 1, less strictly as 51%) of Kashmiris approve this option, the dispute is over and all sides will have to accept the results. If, however, the Kashmiris reject this option, we go to the second referendum, to be held maybe 2 weeks later, which will ask….

    Do you want J & K to accede to India? Again, if a majority (defined as above) of the voters say yes, then the dispute is over and Pakistan will have to accept this result. If, however, the voters reject this, we go to the third referendum, in another 2 weeks or so, which will ask….

    Do you want J & K to be independent of both Pakistan and India? If the answer to this question is yes, both Pakistan and India will have to accept the result, and the dispute is over. Both sides will have to withdraw their troops and it will be up to the people of Kashmir to decide what kind of state they want (perhaps a UN Trust Territory to begin with). If, however, the voters reject this option, then we go to the last referendum, which will ask….

    Do you want J & K to accede to Pakistan? If a majority of voters say yes to this, then India will have to accept the result. However, in this event, those areas of the state which vote “no” should be allowed to accede to India, as long as the areas form a geographically contiguous region (in other words, no enclaves on either side, and if there should be such enclaves as a result of the poll, the inhabitants would come under UN protection – although the fate of “UN safe havens” such as Srebrenica and Bihac in Bosnia may give us pause).

    The beauty of the whole plan is that it lets the Kashmiris decide their own future, free of interference, and in a democratic way witnessed by the whole world. In addition, if Pakistanis are indeed correct in asserting that Kashmiris want to accede to Pakistan, then this result will have been achieved through not just one referendum, but four.
    It may well be that voting may not need to be held in the entire territory. Azad Kashmir is pretty well integrated with Pakistan, and Jammu holds no attraction for Pakistan since it has a Hindu majority, so maybe the whole thing might have to be conducted only in the Vale itself. But many Indians, even now, are not convinced that Azad Kashmir is happy with Pakistan and that is why voting may need to be held throughout the territory.

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