Syed Salahuddin addresses a conference in Muzaffarabad.—AFP/File

ISLAMABAD: The chief of militant organisation Hizbul Mujahideen (HuM) operating in Indian-administered Kashmir revealed that Mansoor Ijaz, who was behind the alleged memo, tried to convince him to continue ceasefire in the Kashmir valley, a report said.

Syed Salahuddin told BBC Urdu that Ijaz, backed by the United States, met him twice in 2000 in Islamabad and Muzaffarabad immediately after the decision was made to end a ceasefire in the valley.

Salahuddin recalled that former official of the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) Khalid Khwaja accompanied Ijaz during their first meeting in Islamabad, adding that the second meeting was held in Muzaffarabad in which Ijaz's mother was also present.

The militant leader told BBC's correspondent Zulfikar Ali, who has previously reported from Muzaffarabad, that he clearly refused the advice and told Ijaz that India was not sincere and that it was using delaying tactics.

Extending the ceasefire in these circumstances would be harmful, he added.

Salahuddin further said that Ijaz never met him again after he asked him not to contact him on the matter.

The militant leader said that Ijaz tried to lure him by offering economic assistance for the valley’s development if he withdrew the decision of ending the ceasefire.

Salahuddin, however, said that he refused the offer by saying that the international community would provide the aid after Kashmir gets independence from India.

Ijaz also tried to establish himself as a credible interlocutor by saying that he was carrying out these meeting on the behest of President Bill Clinton's administration, the report said.

He tried to prove his high level contacts by showing me a picture of him with Bill and Hillary Clinton, Salahuddin said.

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