Mirwaiz-led Hurriyat group leaves Srinagar for Pakistan
Mirwaiz Umer Farooq, chairman of the moderate faction of the Hurriyat, left for New Delhi Wednesday on his way to Pakistan for an eight-day visit beginning Dec 15.
A seven-member delegation of moderate separatist leaders headed by the Mirwaiz is visiting Pakistan at the invitation of the Pakistan government.
Besides the Mirwaiz, the delegation includes Moulana Abbas Ansari, Abdul Gani Bhat, Bilal Gani Lone, Agha Syed Hassan, Musadiq Adil and Mukhtar Ahmad Waza.
"Our purpose to visit Pakistan is to ensure that whenever deliberations are held about Kashmir, the fact that the resolution of the issue concerns our political destiny is kept in mind," the Mirwaiz told reporters here.
Asked about separatist leader Syed Ali Geelani's comment that a visit to Pakistan this time would serve no purpose to resolve the Kashmir issue, the Mirwaiz said: "Then what else would help resolve the issue?"
Hurriyat sources said the Kashmiri separatist leaders would meet Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari and Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf during their eight-day stay there.
Asked why the separatist leaders left Srinagar a few days before their scheduled visit to Pakistan, Hurriyat sources said the Mirwaiz did not want the inclement weather to interfere with the visit as flights from Srinagar could get cancelled because of a forecast of snowfall in the valley in the next two days.