PM calls for world pressure on India over Kashmir

February 20, 2020

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A DELEGATION of Britain’s All-Party Parlia­mentary Kashmir Group, led by Debbie Abrahams, calls on Prime Minister Imran Khan on Wednesday.—APP
A DELEGATION of Britain’s All-Party Parlia­mentary Kashmir Group, led by Debbie Abrahams, calls on Prime Minister Imran Khan on Wednesday.—APP

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan on Wednesday called upon the international community to pressure India to implement United Nations Security Council’s resolutions on Kashmir by exposing its “crimes” in the occupied valley.

The prime minister was talking to a delegation of British parliamentarians from the All-Party Parlia­mentary Kashmir Group, which called on him at his office.

The visit is taking place a couple of days after the group’s leader Debbie Abrahams was denied entry in India after landing there and sent back.

The parliamentary group had last year published its report on human rights situation in occupied Kashmir and accused India of using excessive force.

“The international community has a responsibility in raising awareness about India’s crimes against humanity and putting pressure on India for the implementation of the UN Security Council’s resolutions on Jammu and Kashmir,” PM Khan said.

British lawmaker urges Delhi to follow open, progressive approach as being done by Pakistan

UN secretary general Antonio Guterres, while speaking in Islamabad last Sunday, had asked India to implement the Security Council’s resolutions. His call was immediately rejected by Delhi.

Occupied Kashmir has been under a lockdown for over 200 days since India revoked Article 370 of its constitution and annexed the region. Thousands, including pro-India leaders, have been arrested in one of the largest mass arrests of civilians in India’s recent history.

The lockdown has aggravated the humanitarian conditions in the valley.

“Eight million Kashmiris are under a military siege for the past six months, with all their rights and freedoms taken away from them,” Mr Khan said, adding that RSS- inspired Hindu nationalism was behind Modi government’s actions in occupied Kashmir as well as the anti-minorities measures in India.

The prime minister said Indian leadership’s belligerent rhetoric and aggressive actions threatened regional peace and security. “A just and lasting solution of the Jammu & Kashmir dispute is essential for peace, security and stability in South Asia,” he maintained.

Earlier, Ms Abrahams, while speaking at a press conference at the Foreign Office alongside Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi, said Pakistan’s approach on Kashmir was open and progressive and asked India to do the same.

She said FM Qureshi was very forthcoming, while talking about the observations made in the last UN human rights report.

“What is going on in Jammu & Kashmir has not gone unnoticed. We are not here for a sightseeing trip, to look at what is happening and to do nothing. We are constantly raising this [...] we hope in addition to what we are doing through our government, the international community as a whole will realise that human rights is a priority and that priorities are not just about trade,” she said.

On this occasion, Mr Qureshi recalled UN Secretary General Guterres’ statement during his trip to Pakistan and said: “It is an internationally recognised dispute and the UN chief endorses that. He also said that he is concerned about human rights violations.”

Published in Dawn, February 20th, 2020