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September 18, 2019

Qureshi urges unity among all political forces over Kashmir

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September 18, 2019


LAHORE: While Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi stressed unity among all political forces over the Kashmir issue, Punjab Governor Chaudhry Muhammad Sarwar called for furthering the cause oppressed Kashmiris at all national and international forums.

Speaking at an all parties conference, organised by Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf Punjab, Qureshi said the history would not “forgive us as a nation if we ignored the plight of Kashmiris at this stage”. He said Kashmir was not the issue of any individual but of every Pakistani, and country’s future was linked with Kashmir.

The foreign minister challenged Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi to hold a plebiscite in Jammu and Kashmir to prove his claim of annexing the held Valley in accordance with the aspirations of Kashmiris.

He said what India did with Kashmiris on August 5 was not the matter related to any particular government or Prime Minister Imran Khan solely, but it was the issue of Pakistan’s future course. He added that any government could not tackle it single-handedly as it demanded a greater role from all of us and called for showing unity over the issue. Shah Mehmood said Prime Minister Imran Khan had summoned a joint session of the parliament on emergency basis to discuss Kashmir issue in order to develop consensus among all political parties despite political differences.

He said the political leadership unanimously decided to take up the issue globally. Besides, he said it was due to the efforts of the government that the Independence Day of Pakistan was observed as Kashmir Solidarity Day while the 15th of August, the Indian independence day, was observed as a black day across the globe.

Qureshi said the United Nations’ (UN) Security Council took up the issue in its special session and the UN Secretary General had said that the Kashmir issue was to be resolved as per the resolutions of the UN Security Council, which was a great achievement of Pakistan at diplomatic front. He also said that it was due to the diplomatic efforts of the PTI government that more than 50 British parliamentarians as well as 27 US Congressmen showed support to the cause of Kashmiris.

He said the world had rejected Indian claim that Kashmir was it internal problem and not an international issue. Qureshi said the Organisation of Islamic Countries (OIC) was formed in the wake of Palestine debacle, but it didn’t focus on the issue.

Similarly, he said it was not easy to mobilise the OIC on Kashmir as there were difference of opinion among its members over the issue. Meanwhile, the joint declaration by APC called for sending noted and sagacious figures from politics, sports etc., abroad as ambassadors of Pakistan to plead the case of Kashmir. It also called for mobilising social media campaign to highlight the issue of Kashmir besides urging the government for approaching world bodies like ASEAN, Red Cross, UNICEF, UNHCR, EU to highlight Kashmir problem.

Governor Chaudhry Muhammad Sarwar, PTI Central Punjab President Ijaz Ahmad Chaudhry, former foreign minister Khurshid Mehmood Kasuri and President AJK Sardar Masood Ahmad Khan also addressed the conference. Deputy Secretary Information PTI Punjab Khwaja Aamer Raza, Ishtiaq Malik and others were present.

Speaking on the occasion, Governor Ch Muhammad Sarwar said the PTI government effectively and consistently exposed Indian atrocities and oppression in held Kashmiris to the international community. He said the federal government mobilised various international forums including the House of Commons, United Nations Security Council and Human Rights bodies on the burning issue of Kashmir.

He said members of the parliament and leaders of business community should also play role for Kashmir cause and highlight their struggle for freedom.

The governor urged overseas Pakistanis to play active role in exposing Indian atrocities in held Kashmir as there was immense need to raise voices for Kashmiri brethren at international level.

He also suggested that a booklet should be prepared in which brutalities of Indian forces against innocent Kashmiris should be exposed. Highlighting cruelties in occupied Valley, Ch Sarwar said the members of parliament and international media were allowed to visit Palestine, but no member of Indian parliament or media had been allowed to visit IOK.