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Pak insists on meeting J&K separatists as new pre-condition for talks

22 August 2015

Pakistan's National Security Advisor Sartaj Aziz on Saturday said India would be held responsible if the proposed bilateral talks are not held after India blocked a Kashmiri separatist access to the Pakistan high commission in New Delhi.

Pakistan's National Security Advisor Sartaj AzizIslamabad, however, failed this time to meet its supporters in Kashmir before the talks scheduled to be held in New Delhi on Sunday and Monday.

Briefing newspersons, Aziz said he was still prepared to go to New Delhi without any pre-condition. But, with India making it clear that a meeting between the separatists and Aziz was not acceptable to it, the Pakistani side is now insisting on India consenting to Pakisatani officials meeting its detractors in J&K for bilateral talks to proceed as planned.

Pakistan had, on 25 August last year, staged a Geelani-Aziz meeting to scuttle foreign secretary-level talks.

Citing last year's cancellation of bilateral talks, the Pakistan NSA said New Delhi would also be held responsible if the talks of 23 and 24 August, 2015 were cancelled.

The reason for this "regretful second cancellation, if it happens," will be the same, said Aziz.

India has conveyed to Pakistan that it remains committed to talks but the 'new unilateral' conditions imposed by it cannot be the basis for 'going forward.'

India had made it clear to Pakistan that a meeting between the separatists and Sartaj Aziz was unacceptable.

Addressing the media ahead of NSA talks, Aziz said that he was still prepared to go to New Delhi without any pre-condition.

But, he said, "Don't expect that there will be a breakthrough in NSA-level talks but it will help evolve a mechanism to address issues. Since Prime Minister Modi has come to power they want dialogue on their terms and conditions without Kashmir which is not possible for us."

Aziz also said that cancellation is not yet confirmed from either side, so they were ready to go as per schedule without any pre-condition.

"No serious dialogue is possible with India unless Kashmir is included," he said.

"It was India which introduced a new condition with its advice that Pakistan could not meet Hurriyat leaders. On my part I'm still prepared to go to New Delhi for NSA talks without any pre-condition," he added.

On the arrest of Hurriyat leaders, Aziz said, "It is violation of their fundamental rights. There is no deviation from the agenda agreed in Ufa to be discussed. India is wrong in saying that Kashmir is not part of UFA act," said Aziz

He further said that he will be carrying three dossiers on India's RAW activities in Pakistan.

"If I don't get opportunity to hand over the dossiers to Indian NSA in New Delhi, I hope to give it to him in New York next month if he comes."

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