AJK President condemns cowardly violation of LoC by India
ISLAMABAD, October 02 (DNA): President Azad Jammu and Kashmir, Sardar Masood Khan, has said, “The people and the Government of Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) strongly condemn the cowardly and dastardly violation of the LOC by India on September 29 in which two soldiers of Pakistan armed forces embraced martyrdom (Shahadat). We send our deepest condolences to their families.”
He made these remarks while addressing a press conference at Kashmir House in Islamabad on Sunday. “By deliberately violating the LOC, India has breached bilateral agreements with Pakistan and international law,” he added.
“We pay tribute to the valiant armed forces of Pakistan, which repulsed India’s vicious and unprovoked attack. India’s farce of surgical strikes has been fully exposed. India boasts it deliberately attempted an incursion, though there is no evidence of that on the ground. Any planned incursion would be aggression, and so is the violation of the LOC,” he said.
He said, “The heroic and brave people of Azad Kashmir liberated their land in 1947-48. It is called a land of shaheeds and ghazis. We warn India not to desecrate this land repeatedly through its naked aggression.”
By whipping up the Uri attack and violations of LOC, India is trying to divert and distract attention from its killings and other heinous crimes in the Indian Occupied Kashmir (IOK). Now it wants to target Azad Kashmir. This is unacceptable.
“The people of Azad Jammu and Kashmir and Pakistan will not lower their guard. India is on a path of warmongering and it is spoiling for confrontation and escalation. This is irresponsible and condemnable conduct, he said adding that, “We are ready to respond to any acts of aggression and violence from India. We are grateful to the armed forces of Pakistan for defending the territory of Azad Kashmir; and we say with pride that tens of thousands of soldiers from Azad Kashmir are part of Pakistan armed forces and they would give any sacrifice to defend the homeland.”
“The international community must intercede to stop the hand of the aggressor and violator of human rights of the people of Jammu and Kashmir. India must be held accountable for its actions and made to pay a price for these crimes against humanity,” he said.
He thanked Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif for raising the issue of Jammu and Kashmir with conviction and courage at the United Nations. “Speaking at the UN General Assembly, he depicted the plight of the Kashmiris and projected the legitimate aspirations of the people of Jammu and Kashmir, especially their right to self- determination,” he added.
He also appreciated the restraint and responsibility demonstrated by the Government and Armed Forces of Pakistan in handling India’s mischief and misadventure.
He said that, “Pakistan has taken the right steps to mobilize the international community and activate the role of the Office of the Secretary General and the UN Security Council. The situation in IOK There is a dire situation in the Indian Occupied Kashmir. Since July 8 this year, the Indian occupation forces have killed hundreds of civilians, blinded hundreds and seriously injured more than ten thousand people – men, women and children.”
“This is a crime of massive proportions. The occupation forces wanton killing spree continues, even as we speak. These killings are tantamount to genocide and crimes against humanity. In this context, the occupation forces have violated the principles of distinction, proportionality and precaution recognized by International Humanitarian Law (IHL) in situations of armed conflict. But here the situation is even more catastrophic because India is using force against unarmed non-combatants. It has made the entire population captive and hostage for uninterrupted exercise of terror,” he said.
He said the stark tragedy that is unfolding in the besieged IOK is that people are being killed, tortured, maimed, blinded and persecuted in their own land by foreign occupation forces.
He pointed out that India calls these civilians, whom it is killing, terrorists in order to hide its crimes; and it is trying to change the narrative of tyranny to terrorism. “Yes, there is terrorism in IOK and that is India’s state terrorism,” he said.
“We will take the narrative to where it belongs – India’s repression and Kashmiris peaceful struggle for their right to self-determination and freedom from Indian rule. We would not let India use its narrative as a smokescreen for its reign of terror in Kashmir,” he said.
He said, “We debunk India’s claim that IOK is its integral part. Were that so, why would the people of IOK quash that claim every day by their words and deeds? Though the UN has been hesitating to hold a plebiscite because of power politics, the brave people of IOK every day hold a referendum and say NO to the Indian rule. They have already given a resounding verdict: they would not be part of India.”
Speaking about his visit to New York and Washington, he said at the United Nations, he urged the UN and Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) members to condemn Indian atrocities and support the people of the Indian Occupied Kashmir (IOK). To the high ranking UN leadership, he said: “Activate the mechanism of preventive diplomacy under Chapter VI of the UN Charter, despite India’s refusal to cooperate. There are ways of doing that, including through good offices, mediation, conciliation and negotiations.”
In Washington D.C., he impressed upon his interlocutor that the US Government and Congress should not look at the situation only through the prism of either security in South Asia or their strategic interests. He urged them to use their clout with India to tear it away from its course of death and destruction in IOK and towards engagement and dialogue for the final disposition of the Jammu and Kashmir dispute. “The US is conceived as a value-driven state and it is still the central force in international affairs,” he said.
He said that the human rights calamity in IOK should not disappear from its radar screen and its strategic tilt towards India should not condone Indian crimes against humanity or acquiesce in its war crimes in IOK. It should step forward to play a role to defuse the situation and help resolve the dispute.
“In both places, I had useful meetings with the media and the diaspora community,” he said.
He reiterated that, “Our campaign continues. The sacrifices of the people of IOK will not go in vain. Strong advocacy of the cause of Kashmir and the help of Allah Almighty will redeem us and pave the way for our success.” DNA
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