Colombo, Aug 23 (IANS): Sri Lanka on Thursday rejected Pakistans claim that Colombo has backed its position on Kashmir that it is a disputed territory and should be resolved in accordance with the UN resolutions.
In a statement, the Sri Lanka President’s media wing denied the contents of the Pakistan High Commission in Colombo’s press release of August 21 of the meeting between the Pakistani envoy and President Maithripala Sirisena, on Tuesday.
It said the meeting took place on the request of the Pakistani High Commissioner, during which he briefed Sirisena about India’s abrogation of Article 370 and Article 35 A on special status to Kashmir.
“The President gave a patient hearing to the Pakistan High Commissioner’s views, and stated that both India and Pakistan have excellent friendly relations with Sri Lanka and Sri Lanka’s interest is to see the growth of regional cooperation and friendship. The President did not make any other comment on the issue pertaining to India and Pakistan,” it said.
The Pakistan High Commission in Colombo, in its August 21 press statement, said envoy Maj Gen (Retd) Shahid Ahmed Hashmat called on President Sirisena to apprise him of the situation in Jammu and Kashmir.
Giving his views of the talks, Hashmat said: “The Sri Lankan President acknowledged that Jammu and Kashmir is a disputed territory and expressed his desire that this dispute should be resolve according to the wishes of Kashmiris under the UN resolutions. He also offered Sri Lanka’s mediation and facilitation of dialogue between Pakistan and India to re-activate the SAARC forum.”
“He further said that resolution of Kashmir issue is essential for permanent peace and stability in the region.”