ISLAMABAD, July 5: A two-day dialogue between the think-tanks of Pakistan and India concluded on Friday suggesting the two governments to improve relations and address human rights concerns in Kashmir.
The dialogue was organised by Jinnah Institute and New Delhis Centre for Dialogue and Reconciliation under the title ‘Islamabad Dialogue’.
Former ambassador and Jinnah Institute’s President, Sherry Rehman read the joint resolution and gave many proposals for peace in the region.
The resolution called for a commitment towards improving trade and travel between the two neighbours and stressed both the nations to cooperate on Afghanistan.
It highlighted governance issues in both countries that impact human rights and stressed the need for addressing the issue of fishermen and prisoners at the earliest.
Participants recommended that travel be made easier and the number of entry points on the land routes increased to facilitate people to people contacts.
They welcomed the resumption of back channel diplomacy by the two states and recommended intelligence sharing at the highest level, keeping in view the common threat from terrorism.
They recommended that both the countries should collaborate in the fields of IT, communication, health, education and banking to help reconstruct Afghanistan.
They urged that Pakistan should consider allowing overland transit through the Wagha-Attari border.
They noted that there should be no reluctance in keeping the dialogue on Kashmir on the forefront of bilateral discussions and all channels in this regard must be kept open.
Through resolution it was recommended that both countries put an end to extrajudicial killings and torture as instruments of investigation and law enforcement.
They stressed that a joint India-Pakistan watchdog be created to monitor human rights abuses and suggest mechanisms to prevent state violations.
Participants urged that women should be given a greater voice in the peace process.
Participants emphasized that the media in both the countries should report issues of prisoner release with caution so as to avoid jingoistic reportage.
They recommend that there should be a consolidated database of prisoners available on the internet.
The dialogue was being held for the third consecutive year, and wanted peace between Pakistan and India through Track II diplomacy.
The conference was designed to focus on promoting a robust and inclusive dialogue between civil society from Pakistan and India, and to ensure that dialogue and diplomacy in the region did not remain hostage to various incidents and disruptions, so that civil society could continue to play a role in ensuring peace in South Asia.
Indian delegation include Sushobha Barve, Executive Director Centre for Dialogue and Reconciliation; H.K. Dua, Member of Rajya Sabha; Siddharth Vardarajan Chief Editor, The Hindu; Kalpana Sharma, Senior Journalist; Economic and Political Weekly of India, Syed Malik Political Analyst, Srinagar, Masud Hussain Bureau Chief, Economic Times, Srinagar, Kavita Srivastava activist working on Pakistani prisoners in Indian jails.
Pakistani delegation was consisting of Sherry Rehman, Aziz Ahmad Khan, Ayaz Wazir, Imtiaz Gul, Ahmer Bilal Soofi, Kishwar Naheed and others.