PRESS RELEASE

New York, 20 July, 2016

At the UN, Pakistan called for an end to impunity and brutal repression against innocent civilians by Indian occupation forces in Jammu & Kashmir.

In a series of meetings with top UN officials as well as in her address to the General Assembly, Ambassador Maleeha Lodhi called for fulfilling the right to self determination to the people of Kashmir and for justice for victims of such heavy handed Indian tactics.

Ambassador Lodhi also reminded the United Nations of its longstanding commitments to the people of Jammu and Kashmir under several UN Security Council resolutions.

She argued that the human rights situation in Jammu & Kashmir was worsening because of non implementation of UN Security Council resolutions calling for a plebiscite and exercise of the right of self determination by the Kashmiri people.

Ambassador Lodhi said that the worsening situation in J&K merited attention by the world body, as it posed a grave threat to regional peace and security,.

Ambassador Lodhi briefed the President of the Security Council, Ambassador Koro Bessho, Chief of staff of Secretary General Ban Ki Moon and the Under Secretary General for Political Affairs Jeffrey Feltman on the situation in Kashmir where fundamental human rights were being blatantly violated.

She informed them that over 100 Kashmiri youth risked losing their vision because of the brutal use of airgun pellets by Indian forces. This was in addition to over forty innocent people killed and thousands injured from firing of live ammunition on peaceful protesters by Indian forces. She called for an independent and transparent inquiry into the extra judicial killings in Indian occupied Kashmir.

Ambassador Lodhi also told them that the assassination of a Kashmiri youth leader Burhan Wani had set off widespread protests which were being responded to by heavy handed tactics by Indian occupation forces. Dubbing the Kashmiris agitating for their right to self-determination as “terrorists” was a travesty of truth and was further inflaming passions, she argued.

The Pakistani envoy was informed that the UN Secretary General was concerned about the deteriorating situation in Indian-held Kashmir,and that he was ready to mediate peace talks between India and Pakistan provided the two neighbours accept his good offices.

The Pakistani envoy called the use of excessive force against civilians exceedingly deplorable and condemnable.

She said that the leaders of the APHC ( All Parties Hurriyat Council) have all been confined to house detention. The continued imposition of a curfew has brought life to a halt and is causing mounting hardship to the people.

The crackdown on the media represented a vain effort by the Indian authorities to conceal the truth about what is happening from the world.

The international community must call on the Indian government to honour its human rights obligations and its commitments to peacefully resolve the Jammu and Kashmir dispute in accordance with UN Security Council resolutions, she concluded.

Meanwhile Ambassador Lodhi also forwarded letters of the Adviser to the Prime Minister on Foreign Affairs, Sartaj Aziz addressed to the UN Secretary-General and the President of the Security Council expressing Pakistan's serious concern at the alarming situation in the Indian Occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IOK) and drawing attention to the brutal killings of innocent civilians and grave violations of the fundamental human rights of the Kashmiris by the Indian occupation forces.