Geneva: Ahead of President Asif Ali
Zardari`s key talks with his American counterpart Barack Obama
at the White House, Pakistan on Friday said the US should
facilitate a solution to its Kashmir issue with India.
Maintaining that the Mumbai attacks and the 2007 bombing
of the Pakistan-bound Samjhauta Express had created problems
in normalising Indo-Pak relations, Pakistan`s envoy to the UN
in Geneva, Zamir Akram, told reporters here: "Unfortunately
the momentum has been lost."
Asked what kind of gesture Pakistan was expecting from
the US, Akram said: "Something that Mr Obama promised when he
was a candidate for President but abandoned when he became
President, that is, facilitate the solution to the Kashmir
"That`s the gesture that the administration itself said
it wanted to take and they should follow up on it," he added.
He, however, said the Kashmir problem "can only be
solved by people of Kashmir, India and Pakistan," arguing that
"we need to go to the roots of the problem and develop common
His comments came ahead of President Zardari`s talks
with Obama at the White House later today.
On Afghanistan, Akram said Pakistan must be part of
efforts to strike a political solution in the war-torn
country, rather than being told to eliminate terrorists on its
soil along the Afghan border.
"What you are asking us to do is to pull your chestnuts
out of the fire and be the bad guys. So we kill them while you
talk to them," he said.
Akram said the Taliban were part of native Pashtun tribes
along the Pak-Afghan border region and simply killing them was
not viable "because we have to live with these people in the
"It is absolutely essential for us that we be part of
this approach that is where you bring a political solution to
Afghanistan and not be part of only a military approach," he
said. "That`s where the crux is."