India must allow UN, OIC to witness IOJ&K situation: FM

Shah Mahmood Qureshi briefs OIC chief about Indian attempt to alter Kashmir’s demography

Our Correspondent ​ May 23, 2020
PHOTO: REUTERS/FILE

ISLAMABAD: A day after briefing the United Nations chief about Indian brutalities in Occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IOJ&K), Pakistan foreign minister held a conversation with the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) chief about the humanitarian crisis created by New Delhi in the disputed valley.

According to an official statement, Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi on Saturday called the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) Secretary General Dr Yousef A Al-Othaimeen to update him on the aggravating situation in the IOJ&K and the Indian attempt to alter the territory's demography.

The foreign minister told Dr Yousef that the recently introduced domicile law in IOJ&K aimed at changing the demographic makeup of the Muslim dominated state and it is in clear violation of relevant UN and OIC resolutions and international law, including the 4th Geneva Convention.

He said under the cover of Covid-19 crisis New Delhi is imposing even more stringent lockdown in the occupied territory and enhanced repression of the Kashmiri population through fake encounters, extrajudicial killings and other repressive measures.

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“The occupation forces are inflicting collective punishment on entire communities through actions like torching houses of local residents or razing them to the ground.”

He said India – in order to divert the world's attention from its unacceptable actions in IOJ&K – might resort to a false flag operation inside the Azad Kashmir – a misadventure which could imperil regional peace and security.

Qureshi appreciated the OIC's consistent support to Pakistan on the Jammu and Kashmir dispute. He welcomed the statements issued by the OIC and its human rights body, Independent Permanent Human Rights Commission (IPHRC), rejecting the new domicile law and India's other illegal actions in IOJ&K.

He also briefed the OIC chief about his recent telephonic interaction with United Nations General Secretary Antonio Guterres and the letter addressed to the United Nations Security Council (UNSC).

The foreign minister urged the international community to ask India to implement the relevant UN resolutions; restore fundamental freedoms and repeal discriminatory laws.

He also said India must allow full and free access to the OIC, IPHRC and the UN to investigate the situation on the ground; and allow Kashmiris to exercise their inalienable right to self-determination.

The foreign minister also apprised the secretary general of the rising wave of Islamophobia as well as demonization of Muslims in India since start of Covid-19 pandemic.

Secretary General Al-Othaimeen reiterated OIC's steadfast support to Pakistan on the Jammu and Kashmir dispute and assured that the OIC would continue to follow-up on the issue.

Highlighting that Covid-19 posed a grave threat to the entire humanity, the foreign minister appreciated the secretary general's role in spearheading the OIC's collective response to combat the pandemic while briefing him about the steps taken by Pakistan to contain the virus. The secretary general also expressed his deep condolences over the tragic plane crash and loss of precious lives in Karachi on Friday.

With additional input from APP

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