The author of 15 books on South Asia and international politics, TV Paul tries to decode Pakistan and its many troubles in his latest book The Warrior State. In a telephonic conversation with Kunal Majumder, Paul explains why Pakistan’s Taliban policy requires a rethink
Pakistan Kashmir Affairs minister Manzoor Ahmad Wattoo tells Kunal Majumder that only talks can resolve the vexed issue: “In the Shimla agreement, both countries had decided that the Kashmir issue will be resolved through dialogue, not through any form of aggression. Pakistan has always maintained that the issue can be resolved when the Indian, Pakistani and Kashmiri leadership sit together and talk. Gilani’s statement should be welcomed. During their meetings, both the prime ministers have agreed on the need to continue talking. The ongoing composite dialogues are the result. Manmohan Singh has himself accepted that Kashmir will be a part of these composite dialogues. This is a victory for both sides and shows their seriousness in resolving the Kashmir issue as well as others.”
PAKISTAN IS in a political crisis, again. Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani is openly targeting the army. The army and ISI are digging up dirt against the prime minister on Memogate and are angry with his statements. The judiciary is adamant on pursuing corruption cases against President Asif Ali Zardari and is charging the prime minister for contempt. Amidst all this chaos, talks of a possible coup are doing the rounds. Gilani has been summoned to appear before the Supreme Court. Controversial Pak-American businessman Mansoor Ijaz, the man who claimed to have delivered the controversial memo to the Americans, is to visit Pakistan on 24 January. Kunal Majumder spoke to Ayesha Siddiqa, Pakistan’s leading authority on civil-military relations, about her assessment of the changing equations between the army, judiciary and the government.