NEW YORK, Feb 09 (APP): Braving severe cold weather, a large number of Kashmiris, Pakistanis and Sikhs — some of them holding candles — demonstrated in New York City’s iconic Times Square Saturday night condemning India’s annexation of Jammu and Kashmir and calling on the international community to play its role in the implementation of U.N. resolutions that pledged to them the right of self-determination.
The demonstration, organized by the Kashmiri-American Council, was part of a number of activities planned for the week in connection with Kashmir Solidarity Day.
Waving banners and shouting slogans, the demonstrators condemned India’s Aug. 5 action in revoking the special status of Jammu and Kashmir that has created a crisis in the disputed region.
They also voiced support and solidarity with the Kashmiri people languishing under the nearly six-month-long siege.
The demonstrators, who were carrying flags of Pakistan and Azad Kashmir, shouted slogans against Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and carried banners like “Stop Killing Kashmiris , “End the Siege”, “Wake Up, Wake Up: UN”, “Indian forces out of Kashmir” and “Self-determination for Kashmiris”.
Despite icy winds, men, women and children gathered in the Times Square which was crowded with tourists from the across the United States as well as from abroad.
Speakers at the rally called for the Indian government to immediately revoke it illegal actions of August 5, lift the siege, and enter into peaceful negotiations with Pakistan to resolve the decades-old dispute.
Sardar Sarwar Khan, a former member of Azad Kashmir Council, called on the UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres to move decisively to settle the Kashmir dispute on the basis of the UN Security Council resolutions to usher in peace and stability in South Asia.
He thanked the government of Pakistan for its strong and consistent support it has extended to the people of Kashmir. He called for national unity at this critical time in Kashmir.
Other speakers included Sikh activist Sardar Amarjit Singh, Kashmiri activist Amna Taj and Khalid Awan of PPP.