Musharraf raises hope of lasting peace with offer to give up

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Musharraf raises hope of lasting peace with offer to give up claim on Kashmir
Times Online Link
President Musharraf offered yesterday to abandon Pakistan’s longstanding claim to the disputed region of Kashmir, which has caused three wars since 1947, and to supervise it jointly with India.

He said that it was time for India and Pakistan to reach a compromise on the Himalayan region, which is claimed by both nuclear-armed countries.

General Musharraf’s words appeared to be an emphatic gesture aimed at resolving one of the world’s most intractable and potentially destructive border disputes. It has claimed more than 100,000 lives.

Pakistan would renounce its claim to Kashmir if India agreed to a four-point plan granting the region autonomy or self-governance, he said in the first sign of progress from a new round of peace talks between the neighbours. Under the plan, Kashmir’s borders would remain the same, but would be opened, troops from both countries would gradually withdraw and the region would be supervised jointly by India and Pakistan.

Kashmir wants Musharraf's proposal to be grabbed
Hindustan Times
The predominant word in Jammu and Kashmir is to " grab the opportunity" , while others caution and want " to wait and watch " over President Pervez Musharraf's latest statement in which he has made it clear that Pakistan is prepared to give up its traditional stand of 1948. Few others have questioned his authority to do so.

Musharraf has ruled out Plebiscite - the traditional Pakistan's position since 1948 and Independence - the imaginative mantra of the secessionist movement that gained ground in late 1980s, provided India goes in for staggered demilitirisation and self governance and agrees to joint mechanism.

Leaders of national, regional political groups as also separatists have reacted with a varying degree of optimism and also suppressed frustration.

Chief Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad was very clear that the "consistency is the key". Azad said that Pakistan needs to show consistency and this should be matched with the scaling down of violence from across. "Good words must match with good intentions and their translation into good actions on the ground."
There has to be more to this than Musharraf's apparent acquiscence to the future of Kashmir. I suspect that Kashmir will devolve into the next Lebanon, i.e., a so called independent proxy "country" fought over by regional interests.

Same as it's always been, same as it will always be.

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