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India, Pak have shown maturity: Mirwaiz

By Onkar Singh in New Delhi
January 07, 2004 19:21 IST
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Welcoming resumption of dialogue between India and Pakistan, separatist leader Mirwaiz Umer Farooq said the leadership of both countries had shown maturity by breaking the ice and holding talks on Kashmir.

"The talks in Agra broke down because of the hype created by the media. 2004 has ushered a new era of peace, particularly for the people of Kashmir," the former All Parties Hurriyat Conference chairman told

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He denied the Hurriyat was feeling left out. "We have always said that India and Pakistan should hold talks on Kashmir. But no settlement can be reached without involving the people of Kashmir and that is where the Hurriyat Conference comes into the picture," he said.

The Hurriyat Conference is awaiting an invitation from the Centre to begin talks with Deputy Prime Minister Lal Kishenchand Advani on the Kashmir issue.

"Without an invitation in writing how do you expect us to reach Delhi for talks. There has to be a firm date for talks," he told
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Onkar Singh in New Delhi