Don’t get involved in Kashmir: expert tells US envoy for Pakistan

January 24th, 2009 - 12:06 am ICT by IANS  

Washington, Jan 23 (IANS) Indian strategic analyst C. Raja Mohan has advised newly-appointed US envoy for Afghanistan and Pakistan Richard Holbrooke not to publicly get involved in Kashmir, stating “any high-profile intervention (would) be unacceptable” to India.Recommendations for an enhanced US role “ignore the significance of the back channel negotiations between India and Pakistan since the middle of 2005 on Kashmir, the first such negotiations since 1962-63″, he says in an article in the forthcoming April issue of Washington Quarterly.

The back channel established by former Pakistani president Pervez Musharraf and Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh “worked on a five-point framework for resolving the Kashmir question…”, he noted.

While India was hopeful that the new civilian government under President Asif Zardari might be able to advance these negotiations, “it has yet to confirm its commitment to the framework agreed with Musharraf”.

“The task before the Obama administration, then, is not about nudging India to negotiate on Kashmir, but to help create the conditions in Pakistan for clinching the negotiations that have already taken place”, Raja Mohan concluded.

The Centre for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), a Washington think tank, Friday released a pre-publication draft of Raja Mohan’s article “How Obama Can Get South Asia Right” in its journal.

Raja Mohan is professor of South Asia studies at the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies, Nanyang Technological University in Singapore.

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