World needs to tell India ‘enough is enough’ on Kashmir: PM

Islamabad: Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif said Kashmir cannot remain on the boil forever and India must be questioned by the international community over the continued sufferings of Kashmiri people. “The world needs to tell India that enough is enough”, the Prime Minister said at the International Parliamentary Seminar on Kashmir held here on Thursday, organized by Young Parliamentarians Forum in collaboration with Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Nawaz Sharif said Pakistan would continue to support the struggle of Kashmiris for their right to self-determination. “The voices of Kashmiri people for their freedom cannot be silenced by the gunfires of Indian security forces,” he said.

He termed Kashmir “an integral part of Pakistan’s identity” and said “our hearts beat in sync with Kashmiri brethren and we rejoice in their happiness and gloom”. “Supporting the just struggle of Kashmiris is an article of faith for every Pakistani,” he said, adding that Pakistan would always extend moral, political and diplomatic support to Kashmiris. The Prime Minister urged upon the international community to fulfill its 70-year-old promise with Kashmiris to implement the resolutions of Untied Nations Security Council that recognized the right of Kashmiris. He said Kashmiri youth were writing a new chapter of freedom struggle following the killing of Burhan Wani.

Nawaz Sharif said Pakistan would make sure to highlight the Kashmir issue at every international forum and mentioned that the government had recently sent parliamentarians as its envoys abroad to apprise their counterparts about the plight of Kashmiris in Indian held Kashmir. He quoted American leader Martin Luther King Jr. as saying that “History will have to record that the greatest tragedy of this period of social transition was not the strident clamor of the bad people, but the appalling silence of the good people”. The Prime Minister said Pakistan desired peaceful relations with all neighbors.

He recalled his four-point agenda presented on United Nation General Assembly’s platform that encompassed solution to the Kashmir issue. Nawaz Sharif in September 2015 had proposed four points that included respecting 2003 understanding of ceasefire in Kashmir and at Line of Control, restraining threat of use of force, demilitarization of Kashmir and troops withdrawal from Siachen. President Azad Jammu and Kashmir Masood Khan and Prime Minister Raja Farooq Haider and Defence Minister Khwaja Asif were among the participants of International Seminar that gathered scholars on Kashmir from Europe and North America.

Adviser to Prime Minister on Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz said Jammu and Kashmir remained a core issue between Pakistan and India and was also the longest unresolved item along with Palestine issue on the UN agenda. He said three successive generations of Kashmiris had been struggling for their right to self-determination in 70 years despite harshest measures taken against them by India. He said the Kashmir movement was indigenous and could not be equated with terrorism. He mentioned that funeral of Burhan Wani was attended by 200,000 people and the movement was sustained for five-long months despite Indian pressure.

Aziz pointed that the ratio of Indian security personnel in Jammu and Kashmir were far larger than civilians and said there was a growing realization even in India about the treatment being meted out to Kashmiris. He also mentioned as disturbing the reports of India seizing property and freezing bank accounts of some Kashmiris. Speaker National Assembly Sardar Ayaz Sadiq in his speech said the parliament had passed over a dozen resolutions in support of Kashmiris. He said Kashmiris were facing the brutalities of genocide, detentions, murders and fake encounters and mentioned that more than 6,000 people in the Valley suffered pellet gun injuries. He said Kashmir remained a bone of contention between Pakistan and India, adding that the latter had been disproportionately spending on defence.

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