ISLAMABAD: Foreign Minister Makhdoom Shah Mehmood Qureshi has said that the international community needed to move beyond rhetoric and take meaningful steps in putting an immediate end to the gross and systematic human rights abuses in the Indian occupied Kashmir (IoK).
The Foreign Minister reiterated that the only solution of Kashmir dispute was to grant Kashmiris the right to self-determination in accordance with the United Nations Security Council resolutions.
According to a press release issued by the Foreign Office on Monday, Shah Mehmood Qureshi expressed these views during a meeting with Lee Rhiannon, former Australian senator who is on a six-day visit to Pakistan and Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK).
The Foreign Minister raised the issue of human rights violations in Indian occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IoK) especially in the context of the OHCHR Report on the human rights situation in Jammu and Kashmir which recommended the formation of a Commission of Inquiry (COI).
While highlighting the Indian atrocities in IoK, Shah Mehmood Qureshi said since 1989, Indian occupation forces had killed nearly 100,000 Kashmiris; more than 100,000 children were orphaned, 22,000 women had been widowed and nearly 11, 000 women had been raped by the Indian occupation forces.
Since 2016 alone, Indian occupation forces had resorted to indiscriminate use of pellet guns and had mass blinded scores of Kashmiri civilians, including youth, women and children, he added.
The Foreign Minister thanked Rhiannon for showing solidarity with the people of Jammu and Kashmir and urged her to highlight the atrocities inflicted upon the people of IoK before the international community.
While expressing support for the Kashmiri people, Rhiannon regretted that Jammu and Kashmir remained one of the longest unresolved disputes on the agenda of United Nations Security Council, which had taken its toll on the innocent people of IoK.
She said the international community must take into account the findings of the OHCHR report on Jammu and Kashmir.
The former Australian Senator reiterated that peace and justice was indispensible for the region which could only be achieved with the resolution of the Jammu and Kashmir dispute, in accordance with the aspirations of the people.
She reaffirmed her commitment to raise her voice against the blatant violations of human rights of the Kashmiri people.—INP