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November 27, 2018

India urged to solve Kashmir issue diplomatically

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A
APP
November 27, 2018

ISLAMABAD: The Foreign Minister, Makhdoom Shah Mahmood Qureshi, has said India continues to ignore with impunity the legitimate demands for a probe into gross and systematic human rights violations in the Indian Held Kashmir (IHK), including use of excessive force and pellet guns, arbitrary arrests and detentions, as well as use of sexual violence as a weapon.

The foreign minister was talking on Monday to Kjell Magne Bondevik, former Norwegian prime minister, who is on a two-day visit to Pakistan and Azad Jammu and Kashmir. Bondevik briefed the foreign minister on his visit to India, in particular to Srinagar, where he had the opportunity to interact with Kashmiri groups representing various walks of life. Bondevik said the Kashmir issue should be high on the agenda of the international community and its resolution should be a priority for all. More importantly, it should be noted that there was no military solution to this issue, peaceful and meaningful dialogue was the only way forward for Pakistan and India, Bondevik added.

Qureshi also highlighted the United Nations OHCHR report on Jammu and Kashmir as well as the UK Parliament’s APPKG report on the region as evidence of international recognition of the severity of the problem, says a press release. He reiterated that peace and justice is indispensable for the region and it could only be achieved with the resolution of the Jammu and Kashmir dispute, in accordance with the aspirations of the people. The foreign minister thanked Bondevik for showing solidarity with the people of Jammu and Kashmir and urged him to continue playing his role in highlighting the case of Kashmir on all levels and forums.

Meanwhile, Shah Mahmood Qureshi chaired a brainstorming session with the former senior officers of the foreign service for an exchange on Pakistan’s foreign policy issue. The session was attended by retired foreign secretaries and ambassadors, besides the foreign secretary and senior officials of the ministry, said a statement issued by the foreign ministry.

A frank and candid discussion was held on the Pakistan’s relations with key countries. Many valuable inputs and suggestions were made by the participants who brought a wealth of experience in the foreign policy domain. It was highlighted that Pakistan should pursue a proactive foreign policy to present Pakistan’s perspective on national, regional and global issues. The foreign minister emphasised that such interactions were useful and would be continued in future for informed policy input to the leadership.

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