Altaf Hamid Rao,
Manchester/Mirpur (AJK) Sardar Masood Khan, President Azad Jammu and Kashmir, has urged British lawmakers to send communications to the UN Security Council, UN Secretary General, President of the Human Rights Council and the High Commissioner for Human Rights on the deteriorating human rights situation in Indian Occupied Kashmir. He added that steps should be taken to demand the establishment of a humanitarian corridor for the Kashmiris and bring a halt to the colonization of IOK by India.
The President made these comments while addressing a conference organised by the Jammu Kashmir Self-Determination Movement International which was attended by MP Andrew Gwynne, Shadow Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, MP Afzal Khan, Shadow Minister of State for Immigration, Former MEP Wajid Khan, Leigh Drennan, Mayor of Tameside, Abid Latif Chohan, Mayor of Manchester, Mayors and Councillors representing various constituencies in the North of England.
The AJK President on the occasion commended Raja Najabat Hussain, Chairman Jammu Kashmir Self-Determination Movement International for organising such a seminal event and for the efforts undertaken by his organization in raising awareness on Kashmir.
The President in his address highlighted the four major threats posed by Indian aggression in the `IOK. He said that under the guise of curfew and communication blockade, India is committing genocide in IOK and its unlawful acts in IOK announced on August 5 is leading towards the annexation and colonization of the occupied territory. He added that India is beating war drums and threatening to use nuclear weapons, and also its actions have led to an unprecedented humanitarian crisis in IOK.
Addressing the British lawmakers, he urged them to save the Kashmiris from the brutal Indian regime, and to vehemently oppose the Hindutva and fascist ideology of the BJP ruled Indian government. He also urged them to prevent a war that is being imposed by India on Kashmir, Pakistan and Azad Kashmir. He said that Kashmiris simply demand their right to self-determination as guaranteed under the UN Security Council resolutions.
Masood Khan said that there is a security and communication lockdown in IOK where the streets are deserted and only the Indian soldiers roam around carrying live ammunition. He said young boys are picked up in midnight raids, women and girls are being molested, elderly are beaten and countless peaceful Kashmiris belonging to all spheres of life have been arrested. The detainees, he said, are being tortured and under the draconian laws are detained for 2 years without any charges. Non-combatants are attacked and are being labelled as terrorists by the Indian forces.
After August 5, said the President, India has once again invaded Kashmir and stripped the Kashmiris of their identity. “India being an occupier and a colonizer has stripped the Kashmiris of their sovereignty. Right now the Kashmiris are under colonial rule, foreign occupation and alien domination”, he said.
The President said that the silence of major world powers has been disappointing as they continue to maintain an artificial balance between Pakistan and India. He said that the UN Security Council has not proactively taken up the Kashmir issue and had to wait for a communiqué from Pakistan’s Foreign Minister. He said that consistent and incessant efforts are required to be taken by the UN Security Council for bringing around a just and lasting solution to the Kashmir dispute. He thanked the international media for crafting a factual narrative on the situation in Kashmir and for exposing India’s falsehood.
The President also expressed his gratitude to British MPs and MEPs for their support to the Kashmiri people. He especially thanked the All-Party Parliamentary Kashmir Group for publishing their eye-opening report on Kashmir, which he said was a damning indictment of the crimes perpetrated by India in IOK. He also thanked former MEP Wajid Khan for organising a hearing on Kashmir in the European Parliament in February this year.
President Masood praised the role of the diaspora community, which he said was crucial in creating awareness on Kashmir. He said the diaspora community has worked actively with the MPs and MEPs and have made a great impact.
The event was also attended by a large number of members from the diaspora community, civil rights activists and members of the print and electronic media.