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A webinar on “India-Pakistan Ceasefire on LoC: What Next?” was organized by the Centre for Aerospace & Security Studies (CASS) in Islamabad today.
Speakers from Pakistan and India critically evaluated whether the February 26, 2021 joint statement issued by the DGMOs of Pakistan and India announcing a ceasefire and an agreement to discuss core issues of concern was just another Confidence Building Measure or could pave the way for a comprehensive dialogue on all security issues between the two countries.
In her Introductory Remarks, Ms Sitara Noor, Senior Research Fellow at CASS, observed that any peace effort should be accompanied by mutual desire for peace.
Pakistan’s 26th Foreign Minister Ms Hina Rabbani Khar emphasized that if rapprochement or normalization beyond the LoC was to happen, India would have to reverse its 5th August 2019 position.
According to Dr Happymon Jacob, Associate Professor of Diplomacy and Disarmament Studies, School of International Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University, India may in the near future be willing to talk with Pakistan on trade and other less difficult issues such as Sir Creek. However, on Kashmir, the Indian side might go slow. Dr Jacob also pointed out that there was a real possibility today that statehood would be returned to Jammu & Kashmir as part of a negotiated process. Ambassador (Retd) Jalil Abbas Jilani, Director at CASS and former Foreign Secretary of Pakistan, observed out that longevity of the ceasefire and initiation of a result-oriented peace process would depend on political commitment at the highest level whereby Prime Minster Modi would have to review his wooden-headed approach to the Kashmir dispute and aggressive posture towards Pakistan.
In his Concluding Remarks, Deputy President CASS and former Vice Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal (Retd) Farhat Hussain Khan highlighted that abrogation of Article 370 and 35A had brought extreme miseries to the people of Jammu and Kashmir in general, and to the region in particular. He stressed that India has to show sincerity if it claims to be a partner in peace; and needed to stop human rights violations and give the Kashmiris their fundamental rights, as a first step.
Source PAF Media Affairs