Washington: An agreement on Kashmir is
coming sooner than anyone might think, an optimistic Pervez Musharraf had told top US Congressional leaders in 2007, informing them that India and Pakistan were on verge of a deal
on the contentious issue, leaked cables from WikiLeaks show.
In a meeting with Congressional leaders in Islamabad
on January 27, 2007, the then Pakistani President said he and
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh were on the verge of an
agreement on Kashmir and this could be signed as early as
April that year.
"Soon -- sooner than anyone might think," Musharraf is
quoted as saying in a State Department cable released by
Wikileaks to the Congressional delegation that included
Nancy Pelosi, the then Speaker of the House Representative;
Ike Skelton, Chair - House Armed Services Committee; and Tom
Lantos, Chair - House Foreign Affairs Committee.
Musharraf appreciated Singh`s flexibility, relating
his personal invitation for the President to attend the SAARC
Ministerial in New Delhi in April, the cable said.
"Musharraf explained his decision to decline the
invitation, saying that there is too much euphoria and
expectation at present. If I went to Delhi, but we didn`t sign
an agreement, the people would think we had failed," he said.
"Musharraf said that he has conveyed two options to
New Delhi: either PM Singh comes to Pakistan before April to
sign an agreement or the two hold a signing ceremony at the
SAARC Ministerial," it said.
Musharraf shared his enthusiasm for the just-concluded
visit to Pakistan by three Jammu and Kashmir leaders of the
All Parties Hurriyat Conference, noting that he had advised
them to engage and bring on board other Kashmiris.
"An agreement should not land like a bombshell...
Leaders must prepare their publics, as he is doing in
Pakistan," the cable said.