Foreign Office Spokesperson Ayesha Farooqui’s Opening Statement for Press Briefing today

Today is the 346th day of the continued brutalization of innocent people in the Indian occupied Jammu and Kashmir. In recent days, Indian occupation forces during their continued so-called cordon and search operations martyred eight (8) Kashmiris, including Idrees Ahmad Bhat, Ajaz Ahmad, Muahmmad Usman, Saifullah Mir, Zahid Ahmad, and Waleed Ahmad in Kupwara, Baramulla and Islamabad districts of IOJ&K.

Pakistan reiterates its call for enhanced international monitoring and continued UN reporting on the human rights crisis in Indian Occupied Jammu & Kashmir to save lives, dignity and freedoms of the Kashmiri people under illegal occupation for over seven decades.

The UN human rights machinery in recent months has highlighted India’s non-compliance with its international human rights obligations. Through several official communications, nearly a dozen UN Special Rapporteurs have raised serious concerns over India’s consistent pattern of arbitrary arrests, detentions, torture, corporal punishment, extra-judicial killings, and physical and digital lockdown in occupied Jammu & Kashmir.

On the occasion of the 89th Youm-e-Shuhada-e-Kashmir (Kashmir Martyrs’ Day), the Government and people of Pakistan joined Kashmiris on both sides of the Line of Control (LOC) and across the globe to pay homage to the 22 innocent, unarmed Kashmiris who stood up for truth and justice against the tyranny of the Dogra force in 1931. Across the world, conferences, webinars and peace walks were organized to draw the attention of the world conscience towards the long struggle for fundamental rights of the people of IOJK and to highlight the oppression and brute forces with which Indian security forces are trying to quash this freedom movement.

During the past week, Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi held telephone conversations with Chinese Foreign Minister and State Councillor and Secretary General of the Economic Cooperation Organization. In these interactions, the Foreign Minister shared our deep concern over the situation in IOJK and underlined the importance of urgent steps by the international community to help address the grave situation. Other matters of mutual interest were also discussed including Covid-19 pandemic, Regional Security in South Asia, suspension of PIA flights into EU and Prime Minister’s call for Global Debt Relief Initiative for developing countries. On July 7, 2020, the 3rd round of China-Afghanistan-Pakistan Trilateral Vice Foreign Ministers’ Strategic Dialogue was held via video link. Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Luo Zhaohui, Afghan Deputy Foreign Minister Mirwais Nab and Foreign Secretary Sohail Mahmood co-chaired the dialogue.

All three sides held in-depth discussions and reached consensus on cooperation against COVID-19, the Afghan peace and reconciliation process, and trilateral cooperation and reaffirmed their commitment to strengthening communication and coordination and enhancing mutual trust and cooperation under the trilateral cooperation mechanism,

The Foreign Secretary also held a video conference with Spanish State Secretary for Foreign Affairs on 07 July 2020. They exchanged views on a broad range of subjects including response to COVID-19 Pandemic, bilateral relations and close cooperation in multi-lateral fora as well as the regional situation. The two sides also reviewed the situation in Afghanistan and progress in Afghan peace process.

Ministry of Foreign Affairs and our Missions abroad continue to facilitate and assist our fellow compatriots all across the world. As of 14-07-2020, 221,279 Pakistani citizens have been repatriated from different parts of the world.