Realpolitik hampering Kashmir’s freedom says AJK president

Islamabad: The President of Azad Jammu and Kashmir Sardar Masood Khan has said that Kashmiris are determined to win their freedom and secure their right to self determination despite uncertainties in the geo-political scenarios and India’s obduracy.

President Masood Khan made these remarks while addressing the participants of the 19th National Security Workshop at the National Defense University, Islamabad. Realpolitik, he said, was hampering Kashmir’s freedom but Kashmiris have never stopped giving sacrifices for the liberation of IOK from the illegitimate Indian rule. “Kashmiris have given their blood and they have been waging their peaceful struggle for the past 70 years. They have been victims of ethnic cleansing, genocide and crimes against humanity but this has never weakened their determination to work for a just solution of the Kashmir solution.”

The AJK President conveyed the gratitude of people of Jammu and Kashmir to Pakistan for its steadfast support for Kashmir and the tremendous sacrifices it had given in the process.

President Masood Khan criticized Indian External Minister Sushma Swaraj’s crude attempt at the United Nation General Assembly to characterize the Kashmir issue as a bilateral issue. “It never was and never will be a bilateral issue. It is a trilateral issue among Pakistan, India and the people of Jammu and Kashmir, and the fourth player is the UN which has passed resolution for a democratic solution of the dispute. Besides , if left unresolved, the Kashmir dispute has serious repercussion for regional and international peace and security.”, he said.

President Masood Khan said that through bi-lateralization of the Kashmir dispute Pakistan has lost ground in the international forums. “From being a core issue between India and Pakistan, many now perceive the it as a dispute between India and Pakistan. to rectify this mistake it is imperative that the Kashmiris in Pakistan take the issue to international forums where it rightly belongs.”, he said.

Outlining a forward looking strategy for an effective Kashmir policy, Sardar Masood Khan said that the people of Pakistan and Kashmir must demonstrate unity among their ranks, leverage the Diaspora community, invest in effective communication through the media, think tanks, academic institutions and civil societies, and make AJK and Pakistan political and economically strong.

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