Written by Fayyaz Ahmed, Acting Ambassador/Charge d’ Affaires a.i. of Pakistan to Libya
Before the partition of Pakistan and India in August 1947, it was agreed in the partition plan that the Majority of Hindu areas were to form India and Muslim States of Western provinces and east Bengal were to constitute Pakistan. However the region of Jammu and Kashmir was not included in Pakistan which consisted of overwhelming 87% Muslims. Later on 27 October 1947 India landed its troops in Srinagar and forcefully occupied Jammu and Kashmir.
The people of Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IIOJK) strongly resisted India’s Illegal occupation of their homeland and started struggling for their right of self determination as promised to them under various UNSC resolutions. In 1989 the struggle became intensive and in January 1990 a group of Kashmiris were protesting against the brutalities of the Indian Illegally Occupied Government the Indian Government used immense force to crush them as result about hundreds of Kashmiris were killed. To mourn these killings there were mass demonstration throughout IIOJK and Pakistan. Consequently, to express solidarity with the Kashmiri people Pakistan Government declared 5th February as “Kashmir Solidarity Day”.
Pakistan observes this Day every year to renew their perspective and their pledge to extend their all-out support to their Kashmiri brethren who are engaged in a peaceful struggle to secure their inalienable right to self-determination.
This year the Day is being observed in the back drop of India’s unilateral and illegal move of abolishing the special status of Kashmir and its forceful annexure with India in August 2019. Modi Government has put the territory under military siege and millions of Kashmiris have been confined to their homes while thousand were arrested.
The lock down imposed in IIOJK on August 5, 2019 by Indian Government has completed about 18 months, thus the scenario for 8 million Kashmiris is far from normal. The misery started when India revoked article 370, thus stripped Kashmiris of their special autonomy. So far, Indian Illegally Occupied Kashmir suffers billions of dollars economic losses. UNSC and OIC several times met on Kashmir to reflect the seriousness of regional situation.
The Pakistan Government has highlighted the grave situation of human rights, prolonged military siege in IIOJK, and illegal actions of the Indian Government to change the demographic structure of the occupied territory. The international community must hold India accountable and convince it to adhere to its international humanitarian and human rights obligations and commitments. Pakistan stresses the need for peaceful resolution of the Jammu and Kashmir dispute in accordance with the relevant UNSC resolutions. The only practicable solution to this problem is to hold free and fair plebiscite according to the aspirations of the Kashmiri people.
Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the writer, and do not necessarily reflect those of the Libya Observer