Saghar seeks P5 countries’ role in ending horrifying siege in Indian occupied Kashmir

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Says inaction on Kashmir will have devastating consequences for peace & security,

Islamabad:  (Parliament Times)    The former convener of APHC-Pak chapter and senior vice president of Jammu Kashmir Democratic Freedom Party Mehmood Ahmed Saghar on Tuesday urged the world leaders to play their pro-active role in ending the horrific siege on Kashmiris who he said have been caged in their homes and held incommunicado since the BJP government striped occupied Jammu and Kashmir of its special status.

In a communique addressed to the leaders of the five permanent members of the UN Security Council, Saghar maintained that the India’s illegal and lopsided move to strip the territory of its autonomous status by revoking Articles 370 and 35A of the Indian Constitution through a Presidential Order was a flagrant violations of the UN resolution. Terming it as an act of aggression he said that the illegal annexation of the territory was not only open violation of the international covenants but a ruthless assault on the rights of the people of the state, who have been time and again pushed into throes of instability and perpetual violence by the Indian State.

Highlighting the prevailing precarious situation in the region the communique said, “The events unfolding in restive region are indicative of a much bigger problem”. The volatile situation he said may probably lead to a bigger conflict having serious implications for peace and stability of South Asia.

While seeking the P5 countries’ attention towards the extremely dangerous situation in the occupied territory, the DFP leader said, “Kashmir is in a state of great turmoil, the entire population of nearly 8 million people has been imprisoned in their homes by more than 800,000 Indian Army and paramilitary troops. All forms of communication have been cut off and the people are unable to reach out for support or emergency assistance”. He said that leaders of all sorts of socio-political organizations, business leaders and social activists have been placed under house arrest. “Voices of human rights defenders have been silenced and subjugated. A Section 144 forbidding any gathering of citizens has been imposed to prevent the movement of people”, he said.

“The entire valley has been turned into an open-air-jail by the Indian authorities, normal life has been brought to a grinding halt and people caged in their homes have been living in horrifying conditions”, Saghar said adding that despite the passage of more than two weeks the inhuman siege continues unabated. This inhuman lockdown he said has led to shortage of medicines and essential food commodities in the troubled region. “The eyes of the International Community must open to the fact that the worst effected in this inhuman clampdown are the children and senior citizens”.

Urging the P5 countries to take necessary anticipatory measures to avert the warlike situation he said that in view of the critical situation the permanent members of the Security Council should influence the government of India to reverse the presidential order, which was in open contravention of the UN resolutions prohibiting the parties concerned from taking any unilateral action aimed at changing the disputed nature of the State of Jammu and Kashmir.

Denouncing New Delhi’s expansionist designs Saghar said that Government of India has yet again shown total disregard for the United Nations and the rights of the people. Regarding dialogue he sought the world leaders’ attention towards the fact that India’s stubbornness was a major hurdle and a stumbling block in the way of peace and stability in the region. “Indian has rejected all previous calls for talks between the concerned parties and has out rightly rejected third party mediation on the issue of Kashmir”, he said.

“The recent action by the government of India has virtually blocked the possibility of a real and inclusive dialogue between the parties to find out a peaceful solution of the Kashmir conflict, as New Delhi strictly sticks to its policy of intransigence and no-talk policy with Pakistan and the people of Kashmir who are fighting for their legitimate right, guaranteed to them by no less an authority than the United Nations”, Saghar said adding that this stubborn attitude by the Indian state was actually dragging the South Asian region into a war with far more dangerous consequences.

Under the given circumstance, he said, “There is a dire need that the international community should come forward in a big way, voice its support for the legitimate demands of the people of Jammu and Kashmir, play its role to end lockdown in Kashmir, protect the Kashmiri people and pressurize the Government of India to resolve the conflict in line with the relevant UN resolutions”.

He cautioned that in this time of extreme turmoil inaction on the part of the members of the highest body (UN) on Kashmir will have devastating consequences for peace and security not only in Jammu and Kashmir, but for the whole region.

“Kashmiris have been craving for peace but peace with dignity and honour. The lasting peace in the region could be achieved only if the lingering dispute is addressed in its true historical and legal perspective i.e. the future status of the State of Jammu and Kashmir shall be determined in accordance with the will of the people”, he added.

He expressed the optimism that the peace, justice loving nations across the globe will firmly stand with the oppressed Kashmiris who are being punished with vengeance for demanding Azadi (Freedom) and the implementation of the UN resolutions, which guarantee them the right of self-determination.

Meanwhile, the DFP vice president expressed his gratitude to the government and the people of Pakistan for expressing complete solidarity with the besieged masses in Indian occupied Kashmir. He hoped that the incumbent government will continue to pursue a pro-active foreign policy to galvanize the support of the international community for a peaceful and early settlement of Kashmir dispute.

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