ISLAMABAD, Aug 15 (INP): Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi has asserted that the discussion on Kashmir in the United Nations Security Council after four decades “is a landmark diplomatic achievement.”
Talking to media, he said the issue was last discussed at UNSC in 1971. After that there was a cursory mention of Kashmir in 1998 when Pakistan conducted nuclear tests.
Shah Mahmood Qureshi said the world needs to realise that it was the matter of humanity and not a piece of land between the two countries. He said India has put a complete clampdown on movement of Kashmiris with reports of food and medicine shortages in the held territory. Not only international observers but also international media and members of international organisations have been barred to visit territory to gauge the severity of the situation. The Foreign Minister said India has been perpetrating genocide of Kashmiris in a plan to change the demographic composition of population in Kashmir. Qureshi said India has been opposing the discussion on Kashmir in the UNSC. However, we have accelerated our diplomatic efforts to mobilise the world opinion. The minister said he held in depth discussion on the issue with Foreign Minister of Poland, who is currently the President of the UNSC. Yesterday, Qureshi held a telephonic conversation with his Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov today and took him into confidence over Pakistan’s stance on the longstanding dispute. Qureshi reiterated that Pakistan would continue raising the issue at all international forums to highlight the plight of Kashmiris. According to the statement issued by the Foreign Office (FO), the Foreign Minister briefed Lavrov on the illegal and unilateral steps taken by the Indian Government to change the disputed status of occupied Jammu and Kashmir and its demographic structure. He said that these steps by India were against the United Nations Security Council resolutions and the International Law. The minister highlighted the severe hardships faced by the people of the occupied Jammu and Kashmir in the face of unprecedented lockdown of the entire population. Lavrov underlined the importance of resolution of all outstanding issues through dialogue and peaceful means. The two leaders agreed to continue to work together for peace and stability in the region. INP/AK