Kashmiris Protest in Front of United Nations Headquarters

New York : Hundreds of Kashmiri Americans and friends of Kashmir held a peaceful protest in front of the United Nations headquarters in New York during the current session of the General Assembly.

Sardar Attique Ahmed Khan, the Prime Minister, Azad Kashmir said that Kashmir was situated at the heart of three nuclear powers of the world – India, Pakistan and China - which makes it the most dangerous place on earth. He reminded the participants that the presence of 700,000 Indian military and paramilitary forces has made Kashmir the largest army concentration anywhere in the world. He also said that the European Parliamentary delegation has said that Kashmir was the most beautiful prison on earth. It is in the very national interest of world powers, including the United States, to find a lasting and durable solution of the Kashmir problem.

Sardar Attique Khan thanked the Secretary General of the United Nations for taking note of the grave situation in Indian Occupied Kashmir even though his expression of ‘regrets’ over the loss of Kashmiri lives was late in coming. It is the responsibility of the Secretary General as the custodian of human rights and under the Charter of the United Nations to take urgent steps to resolve this long-standing dispute in accordance with the wishes of the people of Kashmir as envisaged in the relevant United Nations Security Council resolutions.

The Prime Minister underlined that a dispute-settled Kashmir can deliver immense peace dividends to the 1.2 billion people of South Asia

Dr. Ghulam Nabi Fai, Executive Director, Kashmiri American Council/Kashmir Center said that the Kashmir issue has been pending on the agenda of the Security Council since 1948. At that time, an agreement took place between India and Pakistan, endorsed by the United Nations and supported by the international community, guaranteeing the right to self-determination to the people of Jammu and Kashmir. The people of Kashmir who have never lost hope in the United Nations have since that date sought to freely exercise their right to self-determination. This denial of the United Nations Charter and thus the denial of the right of self-determination has lead to bloodshed, pain, rapine and suffering in Kashmir.

At the end, Dr. Fai submitted a memorandum to the Secretary General of the UN on behalf of all participating and sponsoring organizations wherein they said that the gruesome status quo in Kashmir was both legally and morally unacceptable and militarily and economically frightening. There is no time for further complacency.

They appealed to the Secretary General:

1. To create a conducive atmosphere for the Implementation of the UN Security Council resolutions. Alternatively, both India and Pakistan must be persuaded to initiate a tripartite negotiations between all parties concerned – India, Pakistan and the leadership of the people of Jammu & Kashmir to set a stage for the final settlement of the Kashmir dispute.

2. To appoint a special envoy on Kashmir of an international standing, like Bishop Desmond Tutu of South Africa.



Editor: Akhtar M. Faruqui
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