ISLAMABAD: Apprehending a false flag operation by India, Prime Minister Imran Khan on Sunday urged the United Nations to send military observers to the Line of Control (LoC) to get first-hand information about repeated violations of ceasefire by the Indian forces, killing innocent civilians.

In his tweets, PM Khan demanded UN action and said Pakistan would have to retaliate against Indian armed forces’ indiscriminate firing from across the LoC that may cause a war-like situation in the sub-continent.

He said Pakistan would not continue to watch as India carried out military attacks along the LoC targeting civilians. “I want to make [it] clear to India and the international community that if India continues its military attacks killing civilians across LoC, Pakistan will find it increasingly difficult to remain an inactive observer along the LoC.”

He reiterated the demand that the UN intervene in India-held Kashmir because of the situation prevailing there.

Warns world community of war-like situation if India continues ceasefire violations

In another tweet, the PM said: “As Indian occupation forces continue to target and kill civilians across the LoC with increasing intensity and frequency, there is an urgent need for UNSC [United Nations Security Council] to insist India allow UNMOGIP [United Nations Military Observer Group in India and Pakistan] to return [to the LoC along occupied Kashmir].We fear an Indian false flag operation.”

The government has decided that Kashmir Solidarity Day would be observed across Pakistan and Azad Jammu and Kashmir on Feb 5 to express solidarity with the people of India-held Jammu and Kashmir who have been suffering brutalities at the hands of Indian troops. Mr Khan will address the main public gathering in AJK on Feb 5.

People have been facing curfew in India-held Kashmir since Aug 5, 2019.

On Friday, China called India to give serious consideration and positive response to the request of UNSC members after a recently-held UNSC meeting reviewed the situation in the valley.

During a press conference, Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Geng Shuang rubbished claims that the issue did not get much support from the UNSC members.

“Members of the Security Council are concerned about the current situation in occupied Kashmir, and call for observance of the UN Charter and international law, and peaceful resolution of disputes through political dialogue. They believe relevant parties should remain restrained and de-escalate the tension,” said Geng.

The Chinese official said that the UNSC review would help ease the situation in the region “and properly resolve the issue”.

He expressed China’s resolve to continue to play “a constructive role in upholding regional peace and stability”.

When pressed to comment on India’s assertion that no one had shared China’s views during the meeting, Geng said: “We are aware of India’s position, but what I talked about just now is China’s position. As a matter of fact, China and India stay in touch on this issue.”

Commenting on the massive number of Indian troops deployed in the region and the ongoing curfew, the Chinese official said China had urged both India and Pakistan “to exercise restraint, step up dialogue and enhance mutual trust to deescalate the situation as soon as possible”.

“At the same time, as a responsible major country, China has been in close communication with both India and Pakistan and stands ready to play a constructive role.”

Published in Dawn, January 20th, 2020