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Indian Prime Minister Considers Releasing Kashmir Detainees


India's prime minister says his government will look into releasing detainees in Indian Kashmir who are not being held on serious charges in an effort to move the peace process forward.

Manmohan Singh made the announcement at the end of a day-long peace conference in New Delhi on Saturday with representatives of pro-India parties as well as minority Hindu groups from Muslim-majority Kashmir.

However, Kashmiri separatist leaders boycotted the talks. Some of them had demanded India first build confidence in Kashmir by releasing political activists and reducing troop levels.

Mr. Singh says he is confident that Kashmiri leaders who stayed away will eventually join the dialogue when they see the benefits of taking part.

Some Kashmiri separatists are seeking independence from India, while others want to merge with Pakistan.
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