NEW YORK, Feb 03 (APP):Kashmiri and Pakistani activists have called on the United Nations to ensure that the grave crisis triggered by India’s “unlawful annexation” of Kashmir was addressed in accordance with the Security Council resolutions that pledged the right of self-determination to the people of the disputed state to decide their destiny.
Representatives of the Sikh community joined the well-attended meeting, organized by the All Pakistani American Council, held in Brooklyn, a borough of New York City, to mark the Kashmir Solidarity Day.
“The unflinching resistance by the people of Kashmir is a living proof that they are not going to compromise, far less abandon, their demand for Aazadi which is their birthright and for which they have paid a price in blood and suffering which has not been exacted from any other people of the South Asian subcontinent,” Dr. Ghulam Nabi Fai, Secretary-General World Kashmir Awareness Forum.
“A deliberate, systematic and officially sanctioned massive campaign of brutal oppression launched against the people of Kashmir is still on the increase. There is a deliberate targeting of youth in their flimsy hopes to crush a legitimate and popular uprising against occupation”, he said.
“The irony is that the impunity that is being granted to the violator of human rights is not in the context of a new dispute. It is being allowed to arise and to persist in a territory which, under international law, is not part of any member state of the United Nations and whose status is yet to be determined through a free and impartial plebiscite under supervision and control of the United Nations.”
Fai said Kashmiris wanted peace but peace with dignity and honor. No country whatsoever has the right to decide the fate of Kashmir, saying that it were the people of Kashmir who were granted the right to determine the political future.
He urged the Trump administration to place Kashmir on its radar screen as India and Pakistan are nuclear-armed. The suffering and misery of the Kashmiri people continues each day a peaceful resolution is deferred.
Senator Captain (rtd) Khalid Shaheen said that Pakistan has always stood by the side of Kashmir’s demand for a plebiscite.
He said the killings of innocent civilians in Indian occupied Kashmir must shake the conscience of all peace-loving people. He condemned the efforts to muzzle the press and called for restoring the right to assemble and freedom of expression in Indian occupied Kashmir”We stand in solidarity with the people of the occupied Kashmiris.
We condemn in the strongest terms the ban on Internet, social media and restrictions on freedom of opinion and freedom of assembly,” Senator Shaheen said.
He added that it is gravely sinful for a nation to remain silent or passive over the “frightful” human rights violations anywhere in the world, including Kashmir.
Sardar Sawar Khan, former advisor to the prime minister of Azad Kashmir, said that it was their duty to support the people of Kashmir who are struggling for their right to self-determination. “Our objective is to draw the attention of the world powers to the situation in Kashmir and to exert pressure on the government of India and to resolve dispute over Kashmir and help stop human right violations in Indian occupied Kashmir.”
Sardar Sawar Khan said that the way the Kashmiri youth were confronting the Indian forces and turning the entire Kashmiri movement into a peaceful resistance. Today, he added, the mantle of the freedom struggle of Kashmir has been successfully passed on to the younger generation and they are resolute and determined to take it to its logical conclusion.
Every human rights group that has examined the convulsed scene in Kashmir has reported harrowing human rights violations, including tens of thousands of extrajudicial killings, rape, torture, plunder, arbitrary arrests, and ruthless suppression of free speech and press, Sardar Sawar Khan added.
Sardar Amerjit Singh Ji, leader of Khalistan Affairs Center in the United States voiced deep regret over betrayal of Indian Government of her high-minded ideals that marked its entry into the family of nations after long years under the British raj: shocking human rights violations and contempt for international law and binding self-determination resolutions of the United Nations Security Council.
He urged the community of nations to seize this opportunity to promote an initiative towards bringing about conditions necessary for settlement of the Kashmir dispute.
Dr. Singh informed the audience that Sikhs all over the world are waiting for November 2020 when they will participate in the referendum to decide the future of Khalistan.
Sheikh Touqeer Haq said that the resolution of Kashmir issue could have enabled both Pakistan and India to spend their finite resources more on the development of their people rather than on defense expenditure. He expressed his admiration to the Pakistani and Kashmiri American community for being the advocates of peace in the United States for the cause of Kashmir. He said that it is indubitable that the Indian army has committed thousands of human rights violations in Kashmir.
He expressed his unconditional moral, political and diplomatic support to the people of Kashmir for a just and peaceful solution to the long-standing dispute. “We stand shoulder to shoulder with our Kashmiri brethren.”
Muhammad Hussain, Co-Chairman of the All Pakistani American Coalition (APAC) said that an iron-fisted military rule has prevailed in Kashmir, featuring a staggering 900,000 soldiers and paramilitary personnel. Human rights atrocities against non-combatants were a commonplace.
Sardar Taj Khan said the people of Kashmir have suffered long and needlessly because of this brutal conflict. They demand and they deserve peace. Peace in the region of South Asia remains would remain elusive until the Kashmir dispute is resolved.
Roel Dar of the PML-N said, “The way to a peaceful settlement of the Kashmir issue lies in tripartite negotiations between India, Pakistan and the All Parties Hurriyet Conference. He said that it was absolutely necessary to have third party mediation because history shows that bilateral arrangements have never worked out, as India is always insincere.
Khalid Awan of PPP said that India’s war crimes in Kashmir are notorious. Soldiers kill civilians with impunity. Indeed, Indian law grants virtual legal immunity to any type of war crime or crime against humanity perpetrated in Kashmir.
Col. (rtd) Maqbool Malik said that Kashmir’s painful situation is a rebuke to the world powers for their passivity. The world powers need to know that unless India accepts the realities known to the entire world outside the dispute will fester; and that any solution must satisfy democratic principles, the rule of law, and security for every inhabitant of Kashmir.
He emphasized that the brutalities of Indian government cannot and should not go unnoticed. It is the responsibility of the Kashmiri diaspora to be the voice of voiceless people in the corridors of powers all over the world.
James Cyprian, the Secretary-General of Pakistan Christian Association of North America said that he failed to understand why world powers do not want the Kashmiri participation in the talks when the right to choose the destiny of 23 million people was given by the UN Security Council to the inhabitants of the territory and not to the leadership in New Delhi or Islamabad. Any attempt to strike a deal between any two parties without associating the third, would not work.
Other activists Vakil Ansari, Arshad Khan, Khurram Khan, Ms. Fatima Zulqurnain Khan, Zafeer Khan, Ms. Shabana, Ms. Amna Habib, Sardar Hikmat Singh, Sardar Mehmood, Sher Khan and Haji Shari Khan also spoke in support for the Kashmiri people’s right to self-determination.