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Monday July 22, 2024

Pakistan for release of Kashmiri political prisoners

Pakistan demanded to lift curbs on outlawed political parties, and revoke illegal and unilateral actions of 5 August 2019

By Mariana Baabar
May 07, 2024
Foreign Minister and Deputy PM Ishaq Dar addresses OIC Summit in Gambia on May 5, 2024. — Screengrab/X/@ForeignOfficePk
Foreign Minister and Deputy PM Ishaq Dar addresses OIC Summit in Gambia on May 5, 2024. — Screengrab/X/@ForeignOfficePk

ISLAMABAD: Jammu and Kashmir was high on the agenda of the Contact Group of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) when they met on the sidelines of the 15th Islamic Summit of the OIC in Banjul, Gambia, with Pakistan demanding that India release all the political prisoners, lift curbs on the outlawed political parties, and revoke the illegal and unilateral actions of 5 August 2019.

The Foreign Office on Monday said “The participating delegations from different member states emphasized the importance of the Jammu and Kashmir dispute on the OIC’s agenda, and expressed support for the legitimate struggle of the Kashmiri people for realization of their inalienable right to self-determination in accordance with the relevant UN Security Council resolutions. They called for an early and peaceful resolution of the Jammu and Kashmir dispute”, it said.

The meeting of the OIC Contact Group in Jammu and Kashmir reviewed the political and security environment in the Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IIOJK). It also took stock of the grim human rights situation in the occupied territory. Chaired by the Assistant Secretary General (Political Affairs) of the OIC and the Secretary General’s Special Envoy for Jammu and Kashmir, Yousaf-Al-Dobeay, the meeting was attended by the member states of the Contact Group i.e. Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Türkiye, Niger and Azerbaijan. A delegation of the True Representatives of the Kashmiri People, and the senior officials of the OIC-Independent Permanent Human Rights Commission were also in attendance.

Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister, Mohammad Ishaq Dar, led the Pakistan delegation to the meeting. “He briefed the Contact Group on India’s ongoing efforts to transform Kashmiris into a disempowered community in their own land. He apprised the meeting that India was systematically denying the Kashmiri people their fundamental rights and freedoms. He added that the Indian authorities had created an environment of fear and intimidation in the IIOJK to crush dissent. He urged the international community to take cognizance of the Indian leaders’ provocative statements and unwarranted claims about Azad Jammu and Kashmir, which constitute a serious threat to regional peace”, the Foreign Office statement added.

Pakistan’s foreign minister also stressed that India must release all the political prisoners, lift curbs on the outlawed political parties, revoke the illegal and unilateral actions of 5 August 2019 and the subsequent steps aimed at demographic change and political engineering, and implement the relevant UN Security Council resolutions.