JKSDMI virtual conference demands early International intervention on Kashmir

Arif Qureshi

Jammu Kashmir Self-determination Movement International (JKSDMI) organized an international virtual Kashmir conference in collaboration with All Parties Kashmir Group, UK. Raja Najabat Hussain, Chairman of Jammu  Kashmir Self-determination Movement International (JKSDMI) chaired the international virtual Kashmir conference while AJK president Sardar Masood Khan was the chief guest.

Key United Kingdom  MPs, shadow ministers, the representatives of Pakistan political parties, human rights actvists, Kashmiri diaspora leaders from Europe, US and UK addressed in the Kashmir Webinar. The participants of conference paid rich tribute to the Chairman of Jammu  Kashmir Self-determination Movement International (JKSDMI), Raja Najabat Hussain for organizing the International virtual conference.

Raja Najabat Hussain, Chairman of Jammu  Kashmir Self-determination Movement International (JKSDMI) in his inaugural address expressed concern over the situation of occupied Kashmir and stressed the need for a peaceful political and diplomatic settlement of the Kashmir conflict. JKSDMI chairman thanked UK MPs, representatives of political parties and Kashmiri diaspora for participating in International Kashmir virtual conference.

There was consensus among the participants at international virtual conference that Kashmir was a not a bilateral issue between Indian and Pakistan rather it was pending for resolution at United Nation Security Council (UNSC) since decades, the Kashmir Webinar attendees unanimously demanded international intervention to end human rights violations in Indian controlled Jammu and Kashmir and resolve the issue in accordance with Kashmiris’ wishes.

AJK President Sardar Masood Khan in his address called upon the United Nations to immediately intervene and convene a session of the Security Council in order to save the lives of eight million Kashmiris living under India’s inhuman lockdown, curfew and military oppression.

“The UN Secretary-General should appoint a special envoy on Kashmir and the Security Council should hold meetings on Kashmir to come up with a roadmap to implement its resolutions on Kashmir. There should be meetings, and there should be a product.” Khan told an engaging video conference attended by key UK parliamentarian, Kashmiri and Pakistani leaders and representatives of the diaspora community.

Brushing aside India’s baseless allegation that Pakistan was interfering in other side of the Line of Control or is harboring terrorism, AJK President said that such allegations were an attempt on the part of India to hide crimes against humanity in occupied Kashmir, and to divert the attention of the international community from the Indian sordid actions in Kashmir and its own domestic unrest.

Governor of the Pakistan’s largest province Punjab, Chaudhry Muhammad Sarwar while addressing the Kashmir video conference urged the British parliamentarian to raise the issue of Indian oppression in occupied Kashmir in Britain’s elected house. He said the British government and parliamentarians must play their role to bring an end to Indian atrocities in the disputed territory.

Governor Chaudhry Muhammad Sarwar said India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi has unleashed repression against Indian Muslims and people of the occupied region.

Pakistan’s High Commissioner to United Kingdom, Nafees Zakaria said that the that Jammu & Kashmir is an internationally recognized dispute, which must be resolved in accordance with UNSC Resolutions and aspirations of the Kashmiri people.

The High Commissioner expressed concern over the ongoing humanitarian crisis in the wake of Indian illegal action of 5 Aug 2019.He highlighted the sufferings of Kashmiris in Kashmir, who remain under Indian siege for over 300 days, with complete communication blockade and denial of access to media and human rights defenders.

Debbie Abrahams, British parliamentarian and chairperson of the All Parties Kashmir Parliamentary Group (APKPG) in Parliament, said she wanted to visit Indian-administered Kashmir to get firsthand experience on the ground but the Indian government denied her permission.

The APKPG is a cross-party parliamentarian group in Parliament that works for addressing human rights issues of Kashmiris. Accompanied by her APKPG team, Abrahams recently visited Azad Kashmir, where she met people besides President Khan and other government functionaries.

“The UK has been under lockdown for the last 10 week but Jammu and Kashmir has been under lockdown for the last 10 months,” she said, referring to the military lockdown imposed by India ahead of Aug. 5 last year when New Delhi scrapped the limited autonomy of the disputed region and divided the territory into two centrally administered units.

Abrahams maintained that reorganization of Indian-administered Kashmir post abrogation of Articles 370 and 35 A was in “contravention of Article 49 of the Geneva Convention as well as UN Security Council resolutions.” “We need to be mindful of that,” she noted.

British MP Andrew Gwynne, who is also chairman of Labour Friends of Kashmir, said it was worrying to see the “increasing tensions from India not just towards Pakistan but also China” and its implications for the geopolitics of the region. “Kashmir is not a bilateral issue between India and Pakistan. Yes, both parties have to be around the politics of it since they administer two parties of Kashmir…But the reality is it [Kashmir] is an international issue as has been recognized by United Nations Security Council resolutions,” he insisted.

“No decision about what happens to the territory can be made without the involvement of Kashmiris.”

Noting that Kashmir is an issue “that should transcend party politics,” Gwynne said it was time to raise the issue of the new domicile law and human rights abuses in Jammu and Kashmir with the UK Foreign Office and Commonwealth of Nations.

Richard Corbett Former Chairman European Friends of Kashmir, addressing the video conference said following recent dramatic events in Kashmir, this conference is an opportunity to raise awareness across Europe of the situation here. He was referring to the controversial withdrawal of Article 370 and 35A in the Indian constitution, giving Kashmir and its people special status within the country.

“India’s unilateral action in revoking the special status of the part of Kashmir under its control, removing the territory of Ladakh from Kashmir, sending thousands of additional troops, shutting down communications and arresting prominent politicians is simply unacceptable,” he added.

Barrister Yasmin Qureshi MP Chairperson All Parties Pakistan Parliamentary Group in the British Parliament addressing on the occasion said that India was rapidly advancing its nefarious agenda in occupied Kashmir. She said Pakistan has always supported the struggle of Kashmiris at all levels and will continue to stand by the fundamental right of Kashmiris on every front. She said that India was currently ruled by extremists from whom not only Kashmiris but also minorities within India are not safe.

Senator Faisal Javed of Pakistan said that India has usurped all human rights in occupied Kashmir and the attention of the international community is urgently needed, otherwise, the situation in the region is likely to deteriorate. He said that over 300 days of the lockdown and restrictions in occupied Kashmir had been completed.

He said after the double lockdown, India considers Kashmiris as its enemy and is not providing them with essential health items in coronavirus epidemic environment

Julie Ward: Member European Parliament 2014-2020, said today at the Kashmir webinar that human rights should be front and center; commercial and economic interests should not be pursued at the expense of human’s rights; and BDS could be pursued in a legal way.

Ms Angela Rayner, Chair and Deputy Leader of the Labour Party said Kashmir that her party’s position on Kashmir had not changed and that Party Leader Keir Starmer’s position hadn’t changed either.

Abdul Hamid Lone a senior Hurriayt leader said that the world was currently suffering from the corona epidemic and was struggling to cope with it while India was fabricating stories of atrocities on innocent Kashmiris in the territory. He said that at a time when the world was fighting the corona epidemic, India was killing innocent people especially youth in Kashmir.

The conference was also addressed by Deputy Leader of the Labour Party UK Angela Rayner MP, Debbie Abrahams MP Chairperson of All Parties Kashmir Parliamentary Group in the British Parliament, Deputy Chairman APPG on Kashmir Jack Brereton MP,

Chairperson All Parties Pakistan Parliamentary Group in the British Parliament Barrister Yasmin Qureshi MP,Chairman Labour Friends of Kashmir Andrew Gwynne MP, Chairman Conservative Friends of Kashmir UK James Daly MP, Sarah Owen MP Luton North,Shadow Minister Naz Shah MP.

Shadow Minister Tracy Brabin MP, Mohammed Yaseen MP, Rachel Hopkins MP, Tony Lloyd MP,Bel Ribiero Addy MP and Sam Tarry MP, Senator Faisal Javed of Pakistan, Ms Naureen Farooq Ibrahim MNA Member Kashmir Committee of Pakistani Parliament, Sehrish Qamer MLA Chairperson JKSDMI Azad Kashmir,

Former Chairperson Friends of Kashmir in the European Parliament Anthea McIntyre Ex MEP.

Former Chairman European Friends of Kashmir Richard Corbett Ex mMEP, Former Kashmiri Origin Member of the European Parliament Shaffaq Mohammed, Former Member of the European Parliament Julie Ward,

Cllr Yasmine Dar Member National Executive Committee of the Labour party Syed Faiz Naqashbandi Convener Hurriyat Conference Azad Kashmir Chapter, Kashmiri Leaders Abdul Hameed Lone Rawalpindi.

Sardar Nerinder Singh Khalsa Jammu, Syed Manzoor Ahmed Shah Islamabad, Ali Raza Syed Chairman Kashmir Council Europe,

Ubaid Qureshi President Youth Parliament of Pakistan, Mrs Asia Hussain Chairperson JKSDMI Midlands, Cllr Sumera Khurshid Luton, Uzma Rasool London, Shaukt Dar Journalist London, Zeshan Arif Chairman Youth Wing of the JKSDMIUK.

Arif Qureshi is Editor Daily Online “The Fortress” he can be reached at arifqoreshi@gmail.com

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