NEW YORK, Feb 14 (APP):A prominent Kashmiri leader, voicing his outrage over the escalating atrocities by Indian occupation forces in Kashmir, has made a clarion call for a “united front” among the Kashmiri diaspora to accomplish the ultimate objective — the UN-promised right to self-determination.

“It’s imperative at this stage in our history for the global Kashmir diaspora to recognize that real change is needed and cannot happen without a change in the way that we do business,” Ghulam Nabi Fai, secretary-general of the Washington-based World Kashmir Awareness Forum, said at a webinar attended by representatives of more than two
dozens diaspora organizations.

“Foremost, what is needed is a united front among Kashmiri diaspora that will inspire the people as well — a united leadership to demonstrate to them that we are Kashmiris first and foremost, and not simply members of some little political offshoots or an organization that has no real mandate,” he said.

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“Only a united Kashmiri diaspora can unite the people on the ground; only a united people can bring about the change that will help us achieve our ultimate objective – the right of self-determinnation.”

Fai made the suggestion after pointing to facts: over 100,000 Kashmiris lives lost in the past 30 years, disappearance of 8,000 to 10,000 people and 2,700 mass graves discovered in Kupwara alone, documenting that hundreds of thousands of Indian armed forces have made Kashmir the largest occupation on earth.

The grassroots leadership and the global Kashmiri diaspora leadership, he said, have acted frequently, as individual men and women, to such grave situations with calls to action, and the people have responded, taking to the streets by the thousands, and on occasion by hundreds of thousands.

“Yet, despite these facts, these atrocities, and all the evidence, after 73 years of oppression by a foreign occupation, we stand like smoking overheated cars in a traffic jam … with nowhere to go, running out of gas, waiting for some miracle to happen,” Fai said.

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In this regard, he said the global Kashmiri diaspora’s role has become much more pertinent, especially after the developments since August 5, 2019 against the background of changes taking place in the world.

“The fact that more than a million people have taken to the streets of Srinagar on multiple occasions is living proof that the people are not tired,” Fai said, adding, “their enthusiasm and their sacrifices will persuade both India and Pakistan and the rest of the world, as US President Barack Obama said in New Delhi in 2010, that ‘the resolution of Kashmir is in the interest of India, Pakistan, the region and the United States’.”