ISLAMABAD: Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi on Monday sought to tamp down fears about India’s imminent election as a non-permanent member of the United Nations Security Council saying “heavens would not fall”.
In a televised statement, Mr Qureshi talked about the upcoming elections for five non-permanent members of the Security Council and addressed the concerns that India’s imminent election could pose challenges for Pakistan’s foreign policy.
The elections are scheduled to be held on Wednesday at the UN headquarters in New York. Newly elected members would start their two-year tenure from January 1 next year.
India, whose candidature has been endorsed by the Asia-Pacific Group, is all set to be elected. There is no other contestant from the regional group. However, for getting elected India would still require 129 votes, if all 193 members vote.
If elected, it would be India’s eighth tenure at the Security Council as a non-permanent member.
Election of five non-permanent members set to be held in NY on Wednesday
Mr Qureshi recalled that Pakistan too has served seven terms on the Council and is planning to run for another term in future.
Reminding that Indian actions were posing threat for the regional peace, Mr Qureshi said that he had written to the UN Secretary General and leaders of other forums over human rights violations in India, including the maltreatment of minorities especially the Muslim, the brutal repression of Kashmiris by the Indian forces in Occupied Kashmir and its aggressive posture against neighbours.
“Which of the Indian neighbour is happy with the actions of the Modi government,” Mr Qureshi asked.
The world, he said, should see why India is not implementing UN resolutions on Kashmir and committing massive rights abuses.
The foreign minister said that Pakistan was preparing its strategy to deal with India as a non-permanent member of UNSC for next two years while adhering to diplomatic traditions.
Rejecting Indian Defence Minister Rajnath Singh’s remarks at the ‘Jammu Jan Samvad rally’ via videoconferencing, FM Qureshi challenged him to allow Prime Minister Imran Khan or him (Qureshi) to visit Srinagar and see for himself how Kashmiris respond.
He also offered Singh to visit Muzzafarabad and check people’s response.
The foreign minister said that Kashmiris have been so disillusioned with India that no example of it could be found in the past seven decades.
Singh had at the rally claimed that under PM Modi’s leadership, (Occupied) Jammu and Kashmir will touch great heights and people from Azad Kashmir will wish they were part of India.
Published in Dawn, June 16th, 2020