Separatists reject Pak's proposal to declare Gilgit-Baltistan as fifth state

Srinagar(Jammu and Kashmir)[India], Mar. 17(ANI): Hurriyat leaders Syed Ali Geelani, Mirwaiz Omer Farooq and Mohammad Yasin Malik on Friday said that Pakistan's proposal to declare Giglit-Baltistan as fifth state of Pakistan is unacceptable.

In a joint statement, the leadership said that Jammu and Kashmir' political destiny is yet to be decided.

"We hail the role of Pakistan regarding the issue in international flora. However, any deviation in its stance about Kashmir and its geographical entity is improper and will prove detrimental for Kashmir's cause. Declaring Pakistan as a prime party to Kashmir issue, the leadership said that people in Jammu & Kashmir have always regarded and accepted the role of Pakistan as a party to the issue, however any step which may hamper the disputed status of Kashmir is unacceptable," the statement said.

Earlier, the Centre strongly reacted to Pakistan's move to declare Gilgit-Baltistan as the country's fifth province.

Ministry of External Affairs Spokesperson Gopal Baglay had said any such step would not be able to hide the illegality of Pakistan's occupation of parts of Jammu and Kashmir, which it must vacate, forthwith.

Balochistan, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Punjab and Sindh are the four provinces in Pakistan. (ANI)