Srinagar: Separatists on Saturday took a strong exception to the statement of External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid that Kashmir is an internal issue, saying it is "contrary to the historical realities".
"We denounce the statement of Khurshid (that Kashmir is an internal issue). The statement is contrary to the historical realities of Kashmir issue and an open expression of continuation of New Delhi`s traditional obduracy based on unrealistic policy," Moderate Hurriyat headed by Mirwaiz Umer Farooq said in a statement.
Accusing the Centre of adopting "double standards" on Kashmir, the Hurriyat said on one hand the government talks of initiating negotiations with Pakistan to solve the Kashmir issue and on the other, it issues statements whereby it terms Kashmir as internal issue.
"Khurshid`s statement was an effort to brush aside the bitter political realties associated with Kashmir. Khurshid should know that Kashmir is an internationally recognised dispute," the separatist amalgam said, adding "UN considers it as a dispute and has passed several resolutions in this regard."
Advocating resolution of the issue in accordance with the "wishes and aspirations" of the people of Kashmir, the Hurriyat asked New Delhi to shun its "stubbornness and forcible occupation" of Kashmir through military might and instead take bold steps to solve the issue.
Chairman of Hardline Hurriyat Syed Ali Shah Geelani termed the statement of Khurshid as "unrealistic" and said "Kashmir is neither the crown of India nor a family dispute."
"Kashmir is an uncertainty gripped disputed land and its disputed nature has been accepted by the entire world and even the governments of India and Pakistan," Geelani said in a separate statement here.
"Pakistan is a party to the dispute as one part of Kashmir is under the control of Islamabad. Pakistan cannot be sidelined whenever there is a talk for resolution of Kashmir issue," Geelani said.
JKLF chairman Mohammad Yasin Malik said, "Kashmir issue is a world acknowledged problem and was not taken to United Nations by any Kashmiri or Pakistan but Indian leadership themselves."
"The dream of peace and prosperity in the subcontinent cannot be achieved without solving Kashmir - a human issue," Malik said and urged New Delhi to show magnanimity and accept the right of freedom of Kashmiris.