SRINAGAR: Mainstream politicians in J&K, as well as the separatist All Parties Hurriyat Conference, have all lauded the mutual agreement between India and Pakistan to defuse tensions in Kashmir Valley with a pledge to halt cross-border firing.
Former J&K chief minister and National Conference chief, Farooq Abdullah said this is the first step towards dialogue for establishing peace in the region, “which we have always been advocating”.
“We welcome it and hope that the statement will be followed in letter and spirit. JKNC has always been a strong supporter of the ceasefire along the LoC. This will allow people living along the LoC & IB (International Border) to go about their normal lives with minimal disruption & risk,” an NC statement said.
Mehbooba Mufti, former J&K chief minister and People’s Democratic Party chief, said, “This is a welcome development for all of us and for the people living on the LoC as they always bear the brunt of ceasefire violations.”
The move was the need of the hour as both countries have been facing challenges and dialogue was the only way forward, she reiterated. “The situation in Kashmir can only be solved through dialogue. We hope the ceasefire agreement between the two countries will be a success and the talk from the military operations level will also reach up to the political level,” Mufti said.
In its statement, All Parties Hurriyat Conference (APHC) said, “It is a move in the right direction, which will provide huge relief to the beleaguered people living under constant threat on the LOC and end the bloodshed there..”
APHC also said that the governments of India and Pakistan now need to address the core concern of J&K in keeping with the aspirations of its people in the valley.