India trying to portray false sense of normalcy, development in IIOJK: FO

Kashmiri women being faced with worse nightmare of terror, trauma

ISLAMABAD, Nov 4 (APP): Pakistan on Thursday said that despite deploying 900,000 troops and paramilitary deployment in IIOJK, India was trying to portray false sense of normalcy and development in the territory.

“India is trying to portray false sense of normalcy and development in IIOJK. But the reality on ground is totally different as you have also noted that the Kashmiri people have rejected these attempts,” Foreign Office spokesperson Asim Iftikhar said in his weekly press briefing.

He said the heavy deployment of India troops made the occupied territory the most heavily militarized zone in the world, and they continued with this policy of subjugating the people of IIOJK through the barrel of the gun.

“Regarding the reported investment/development projects in IIOJK, that clearly is an effort by India to divert international attention from its illegal occupation and human rights violations, serious violations of international humanitarian law, war crimes and crimes against humanity in IIOJK,” the spokesperson said.

He said in continued acts of state terrorism, Indian troops martyred 22 Kashmiris during the month of October in Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir.

He said the Kashmiri students continue to be penalized, threatened and persecuted by India over a cricket match between Pakistan and India.

“This is reflective of the extremist anti-Muslim and anti-Kashmiri Hindutva mindset in India that Pakistan has been forewarning about, and you would have seen recent reports in the international media critical of these worrying developments,” he commented.

Expressing “serious concern” on the reports about Indian occupation forces setting up a so-called new investigation agency in IIOJK, he said this could be another repressive tool to further terrorize Kashmiris.

“It is extremely reprehensible that minorities, particularly Muslims are being unabatedly attacked by extremist Hindutva brigades with impunity and state complicity in BJP-RSS regime,” he added.

He said disturbing recent incidents, including, stopping Muslims to offer Friday prayers at several places, attacks on many mosques and Muslim businesses in Tripura, rendering Muslims homeless and landless in Assam, victimization of renowned persons, targeting of Urdu language of Muslim minority and violence against Muslims on flimsy pretexts were clear signs of the fascist polity in India.

“We call upon the international community to play its role to stop the rising tide of Islamophobia and attacks against minorities particularly Muslims in India, and ensure their safety, security and well-being and protection in particular of their places of worship and heritage sites,” he remarked.

The spokesperson conveyed condolences on the casualties in road accident in AJK and condemned terrorist attacks in Kabul on November 2.

Touching upon the diplomatic activities took place during last week, Asim Iftikhar mentioned a telephone call between Foreign Minister Qureshi and his Australian counterpart, and Foreign Secretary Sohail Mahmood’s meeting with visiting Special Representative of Australia on Afghanistan.

He also highlighted the launch of the Foreign Minister’s Portal for all 114 Pakistan Missions covering 187 countries to help the Pakistani Diaspora in several ways, including by facilitating document attestation through QR codes, online verification of Powers of Attorney, reducing chances of counterfeiting and providing instantaneous access to the Pakistani community to a robust complaint registration and redressal system with Pakistan’s Missions.

He also apprised media of Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi’s meeting with young entrepreneurs from the Lahore Chapter of Entrepreneurs Organization, European Parliament’s Delegation for Relations with the Countries of South Asia led by Nicola Procaccini, and Secretary of the Security Council of Uzbekistan Lt-Gen Victor Makhmudov and his delegation.

About the commemoration of the 76th anniversary of the founding of the United Nations last week, the spokesperson said the foreign secretary, at an event, had highlighted Pakistan’s constructive contributions to the work of the UN in promoting the fundamental principles of the UN Charter, peacekeeping, refugee protection, humanitarian action, climate change, and international cooperation for sustainable development.

To a question about Pakistan’s participation in COP26 Summit, the spokesperson said Prime Minister Imran Khan had been in the lead globally in advocating strong action for combating climate change and that the country had a “very constructive and strong participation” in the summit as well.

Asked about FATF, he said, Pakistan had concerns about politicization of FATF by some countries, which was not consistent with the technical nature of the issues discussed in this forum.

Asked about the Kartarpur Corridor, he said Pakistan’s policy had been very clear and remained strongly committed to its functioning, and supported its early reopening. We hope India would respond positively, he added.