Houston: Sardar Masood Khan, President Azad Jammu and Kashmir, while addressing a gathering of the Association of Physicians of Pakistan Descent in North America (APPNA), called upon the US Congress to hold a debate and pass a resolution on the serious situation in the Indian Occupied Kashmir.
Congresswoman Sheila Jackson-Lee, Congressman Al Green and State Representative Sean Thierry also spoke at the event and warmly welcomed the presence of the President on the occasion. They said that they would make concerted efforts for the restoration of the rights of the people of Jammu and Kashmir and for averting a war in the region.
The President thanked the leadership of Mr. Tahir Javed, an influential voice within the US Democratic Party for mobilizing the community.
President Masood Khan said that the Pakistani-Americans and Kashmiri-Americans, in support of the Congressman and Senators who had raised their voice in support of Kashmiris, should get to Washington D.C to persuade the US Congress to give diplomatic and political support for an end to the ongoing killings, incarcerations and torture in Kashmir. “End to killings and persecution is first priority; but the US Congress should also put its weight behind efforts to reverse the unlawful steps India took on August 5, 2019 to subvert the status of Jammu and Kashmir whose political status has to be decided in accordance with the wishes of its people”, he said.
He also called on the members of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and House Foreign Affairs Committee to take initiative in this regarding and take steps to address the human rights crisis in the Indian Occupied Kashmir.
The President thanked the people of Houston for organizing a big rally against the “Howdy Modi” rally of the Indian-Americans. The demonstration by nearly 30,000 people in New York on September 27 in front of the UN Headquarters, while Modi was addressing the General Assembly, showed the outrage of the world community against the aggravating steps taken by India’s extremist government.
President Masood Khan expressed his deep disappointment over the silence and inaction of the UN Security Council since August 16, 2019, when it convened an informal session at the request of Pakistan. If the Security Council does not act, the people of Jammu and Kashmir will have to take steps to defend their rights and there would be an irreversible drift to war with dire consequences. “India is threatening Pakistan with the use of nuclear weapons. Is it not the responsibility of the international community to restrain and discipline India?” he asked.
The President said: “There is time to be silent, and the time to speak; and this is the time to speak as a bloodbath has already started in Kashmir where 13,000 boys have been picked up arbitrarily by occupation force and are being tortured in concentration camps.”
Right now, President Masood Khan said India’s violent extremist government is celebrating its murderous campaign in Kashmir and is seeking endorsement for that from world leaders, while Kashmiris and Pakistanis are demonstrating outside the United Nations and in world capitals. “A day would come when the dawn of Kashmir’s freedom and self-determination would be celebrated in the streets and squares of Kashmir and all around the world”, he said. Kashmiris, he said, had fought their war for freedom for the past 200 years and had not capitulated to terror and tyranny and they had taken a vow that would get their freedom under the most daunting circumstances and no power on earth can stop them from attaining this goal.
The President invited Congresswoman Sheila Jackson-Lee and members of Pakistan Caucus in the US Congress to visit Azad Kashmir. He extended an invitation to Congressman Al Green to visit Azad Kashmir which he accepted.
The President emphasized that neither Kashmiris nor Pakistan wanted a war. Their preference, he said, was to stop repression in Kashmir and to resolve the Jammu and Kashmir dispute through peaceful means, especially through multilateral efforts led by the UN. “We want that the UN sets up peace tables and eliminates the war theatre in the IOK where 900,000 occupation forces are brutalizing unarmed civilians.”
Earlier, the President had a meeting with Congressman Al Green in which he briefed him about the horrendous human rights situation in IOK and sought the help of the US Congressional leaders to rescue Kashmiris from India’s state terrorism and support initiation of diplomacy for giving them their rights promised by the UN and international law.