27 March 2020 (GNP): In line with the Government of Pakistan’s efforts to continuously highlight the dire human rights and humanitarian situation in the Indian Occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IOJ&K), Foreign Minister Makhdoom Shah Mahmood Qureshi addressed another letter to the President of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) and the United Nations Secretary General (UNSG), drawing attention to developments in IOJ&K as well as belligerent Indian rhetoric and aggressive actions on the ground.
The Foreign Minister has been regularly updating the UNSC President and the UNSG on the Indian actions in IOJ&K since 5 August 2019, posing threat to peace and security in South Asia.
In his recent letter, transmitted on 9 March 2020, the Foreign Minister inter alia rejected India’s false narrative of “normalcy” in IOJ&K; drew attention to the reprehensible remarks of the Indian Chief of Defence Staff about “deradicalization” camps for Kashmiri youth; highlighted intensified ceasefire violations by the Indian forces on Line of Control (LoC) since 12 December 2019; and stressed the possibility of India staging a ‘false flag’ operation to divert international attention from the grave human rights and humanitarian situation in IOJ&K.
Furthermore, the Foreign Minister has highlighted irresponsible statements by the Indian leadership, including by the Indian Prime Minister, threatening the use of force against Pakistan.
The Foreign Minister, particularly, highlighted India’s machinations seeking to change the demographic structure of IOJ&K. In this regard, he drew attention to forcible confiscation of properties of Kashmiris and allocation of over 6,000 acres of land to non-Kashmiris in clear violation of international law, including the 4th Geneva Convention.
The Foreign Minister also underlined that the targeted killings of Muslims in New Delhi in February 2020 were directly attributable to the majoritarian mindset and supremacist and divisive “Hindutva” ideology.
In his letter, the Foreign Minister made clear that durable peace and stability in South Asia would remain contingent upon a just and lasting solution of the Jammu and Kashmir dispute. As such, he underlined, that the Security Council must remain seized of the Jammu and Kashmir dispute and play its role in enabling the people of Jammu and Kashmir to exercise their right to self-determination as promised to them under the relevant UNSC Resolutions.
In further follow-up of the Foreign Minister’s letter, Pakistan has been calling for immediate lifting of communication restrictions and unfettered access to medical and other essential supplies in IOJ&K in the wake of outbreak of coronavirus in the occupied territory. Similar voices have been raised by human rights organizations and the civil society, particularly after the confirmed cases and a death in IOJ&K due to the Virus.