ISLAMABAD: Minister for Inform­ation and Broadcasting Marriyum Auran­gzeb on Saturday said that Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif had issued directives to the ministries of law and justice and human rights to raise the issue of the conviction of Hurriyat leader Yasin Malik on concocted charges at international forums.

Addressing a press conference along with Mashaal Malik, wife of the incarcerated leader, she said India had levelled false allegations against the peaceful Hurriyat leader.

She said an Indian court indicted Mr Malik on May 19 in a fabricated terrorism case and he would be awarded a sentence on May 25. She said India was conspiring to sentence him to death or life imprisonment through this fake case.

Mr Malik had not been accused of any negative activities till date as he was struggling for the freedom of Kashmir through peaceful means, the minister said.

Ms Aurangzeb said in a video released from Tihar Jail, Mr Malik was heard saying he should be allowed to speak.

She questioned that if India was not afraid of Mr Malik why it was not allowing him to speak and why it was not allowing him a free trial. She said Kashmiri people had never been and would never be slaves of India despite its bullying and barbarism.

She paid homage to martyrs of India-held Kashmir, including Maqbool Butt, Afzal Goru and Syed Ali Gilani, who dedicated their lives for Kashmiris.

The international community should take notice of human rights violations being committed by Indian occupation forces in the occupied territory, she said.

She said: “Yasin Malik has no access to a free trial, his voice is not being heard outside”.

Meanwhile, Adviser to PM on Kashmir Affairs and Gilgit-Baltistan Qamar Zaman Kaira called upon global human rights watchdogs to highlight Mr Malik’s illegal conviction at the national and international forums.

The call came in a joint letter that Mr Kaira sent to the Amnesty International, the Human Rights Watch offices in New York and Islamabad as well as UNHCR.

Published in Dawn, May 22nd, 2022

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