ISLAMABAD: Pakistan on Tuesday termed the Indian announcement to initiate a dialogue to understand legitimate aspirations of people of Indian Occupied Jammu and Kashmir as an ‘insincere’ and ‘unrealistic’ measure because any meaningful dialogue must include three parties to the conflict i.e. Pakistan, Kashmiris and India.

The remarks came in following the naming of a former Indian intelligence chief as its special representative to initiate and carry forward a dialogue with elected representatives, various organisations and concerned individuals in the state of Jammu and Kashmir.

Responding to a question regarding India’s announcement designating Dineshwar Sharma, a former Indian intelligence officer, as the central representative to initiate “interaction and dialogue to understand legitimate aspirations of people in Jammu and Kashmir”, the Foreign Office Spokesperson Nafees Zakaria stated that the measure did not appear to be sincere and realistic.

He said that, if anything, the Indian government’s announcement illustrated recognition – once again – of the futility of use of force and of the indispensability of dialogue to solve the issue. He, however, added that for any dialogue process to be meaningful and result-oriented, it has to include the three main parties – Pakistan, Kashmiris and India.

He said that without the participation of the Hurriyat leadership, no interaction or dialogue would carry any weight or meaning. He further added that the designated interlocutor had been entrusted with the task of understanding the legitimate aspirations of the Kashmiri people i.e. realisation of their right to self-determination – which in reality had been known for 70 years.

The spokesperson also emphasised that the need of the hour was to bring an end to the Indian state-sponsored terrorism in (Indian) occupied Kashmir and to have a dialogue for peacefully resolving the Jammu and Kashmir dispute in accordance with the UN Security Council resolutions and the wishes of the Kashmiri people.

“This is imperative for ensuring durable and sustainable peace and stability in South Asia. Pakistan hopes that the international community would play its rightful role in facilitating such an outcome,” concluded Nafees Zakaria.

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