Foreign office spokesperson Opening Statement for Press Briefing on 06 August, 2020

Opening Statement for Press Briefing on 06 August, 2020 by Spokesperson Foreign Office

Yesterday (5 August) marked 365 days of the unprecedented, inhuman military siege and communication blockade since India`s illegal and unilateral actions of 5th August 2019. Eight million Kashmiris have been made prisoners in their own homes. To express solidarity with our Kashmiri brethren, the entire Pakistani nation observed Youm-e- Istehsal yesterday. Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi led a huge rally from the Foreign Office. The rally was also joined by Senate Chairman, Minister for Kashmir Affairs, Minister for Information and Broadcasting, Chairman Kashmir Committee, Special Assistant to Prime Minister on National Security, parliamentarians and senior government officials. President of Pakistan Dr. Arif Alvi addressed the rally and expressed in unequivocal terms the solidarity of the Pakistani nation with the Kashmir cause and our abiding commitment to the people of Indian illegally occupied Jammu and Kashmir.
Prime Minister Imran Khan addressed the Assembly of Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) and expressed solidarity with the innocent Kashmiri people on Youm-e-Istehsal. The Prime Minister also announced that eminent Hurriyet leader Syed Ali Gillani would be conferred with Nishan-e-Pakistan on August 14 for his bravery and continued struggle for the Jammu and Kashmir cause.
In his message the Foreign Minister underlined that “the international community must do more and back its words with concrete actions for the innocent Kashmiri people who have been subjected to arbitrary arrests, detentions, torture, corporal punishment, extra-judicial killings, digital lockdown and a military siege in occupied Jammu & Kashmir for over twelve months. For a large part of the global population, to continue to have faith in international justice, it is imperative that India is held accountable for its unconscionable actions since 5 Aug 2019.”
On Pakistan’s request the UNSC in its meeting yesterday, discussed the situation of Jammu and Kashmir for the third time in a year. The Security Council reaffirmed the validity of its resolutions that the final disposition of the Jammu and Kashmir dispute will be made through a free, fair and impartial plebiscite under the auspices of the United Nations. The UN Secretariat and UNMOGIP representatives briefed the Council members on the current situation in the occupied Jammu and Kashmir and confirmed that the overall situation is tense. Human rights concerns were also expressed particularly with regard to India’s continued oppression as well its attempts to change the demography of the IOJK. The need to strengthen UNMOGIP which is facing challenges due to India’s non cooperation was also underscored.
We are grateful to all the members of the UNSC and especially China for their support in organizing the meeting in UNSC. The fact that on three occasions in one year the Jammu and Kashmir issue has been discussed in the Security Council completely negates the failed Indian assertions that it is only bilateral issue.
Voices in support of the Kashmiri people rang across the globe marking one year of the illegal action by India and the continued brutalization and disenfranchisement of the Kashmiri people. China in its statement underscored that Jammu and Kashmir is a dispute left over from history between Pakistan and India. That is an objective fact established by the U.N. Charter, U.N. Security Council resolutions and bilateral agreements between Pakistan and India. Any unilateral change to the status quo is illegal and invalid.”
Turkey also reiterated that the dispute of Jammu and Kashmir should be resolved through dialogue, within the framework of the UN Charter and relevant UN resolutions.
OIC in its statement urged again for abstention from changing the demographic composition of Jammu and Kashmir and reaffirmed its solidarity with the people of Jammu and Kashmir. The OIC Human Rights Commission in its statement yesterday strongly condemned the year-long inhuman security and communication blockade in IIOJK by the Indian security forces and called upon India to ensure the protection of the human rights and fundamental freedoms of Kashmiris as well as to ensure implementation of the relevant UN and OIC resolutions on the subject.
The UN human rights experts also called for urgent action to remedy the “alarming” human rights situation in Jammu and Kashmir, and stated that “If India will not take any genuine and immediate steps to resolve the situation, meet their obligations to investigate historic and recent cases of human rights violations and prevent future violations, then the international community should step up.” The experts also raised concerns with the Indian government about alleged arbitrary detention and torture and ill-treatment to which the Government as well as the criminalization of journalists covering the situation and the detention and deteriorating health of a high profile human rights lawyer.
Human Right Watch in its statement yesterday underlined that India’s unwarranted restraints on the rights to free speech, access to information, health care, and education, which have been intensified by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Countries across the world also condemned India’s continued oppression in the Indian illegally occupied Jammu and Kashmir.
Protests and rallies were held in London, Paris, Lisbon, Brussels, Houston, Athens, Oslo, Copenhagen while seminars and exhibitions were held in many capitals of the world. Human rights violations and abuses meted out to Kashmiri men, women and children as a result of the continued oppression by Indian security forces was the subject of scores of articles and Op eds in the international media.
On 4 August, 2020, Pakistan issued a political map depicting our long standing and consistent position on Jammu and Kashmir, anchored in the UNSC resolutions and stipulating that the accession of the state will be through a UN-supervised plebiscite. Pakistan’s political map firmly rejects the political map issued by India after 5 August, 2019, making false territorial claims including on AJK and GB.
Pakistan categorically rejects the statement made by the Indian Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) on Pakistan’s political map. India cannot create a smokescreen for its illegal and unacceptable actions in Indian occupied Jammu & Kashmir, including those taken since 5 August 2019. It is preposterous for a country that is compulsively expansionist, and a brazen practitioner of state-terrorism, to level charges against others.
Pakistan also reiterates its strong condemnation of construction of ‘Ram Mandir’on the site where historic Babri Masjid stood for around five centuries. The flawed judgment of the Indian Supreme Court paving the way for construction of the temple not only reflects the preponderance of faith over justice but also the growing majoritarianism in today’s India, where minorities, particularly Muslims and their places of worship, are increasingly under attack.
We extend our deep condolences to the Government and people of Lebanon over the loss of precious lives in the explosion that took place in Beirut day before and pray for the innocent lives lost in the blast and for a speedy and full recovery of those injured.
Our Prime Minister and Foreign Minister have expressed their grief and sorrow over the loss of precious lives in Beirut, conveyed their deep condolences to the government and the people of Lebanon. They also expressed our solidarity with our Lebanese brethren in their difficult time
During the recent explosion, a Pakistani family living near the port, was severely affected and injured. A teenager boy could not sustain injuries and expired yesterday. His father and sister are also critical. Another Pakistani family was affected; however, they have been accommodated in hotel as their apartment was demolished.
Pakistan Embassy in Beirut has quickly responded to the situation and circulated contact details and email addresses. Any Pakistanis affected by the blasts or their relatives in Pakistan can contact Embassy officials to inquire about the well-being of their relatives. Emergency contact numbers of our Mission in Beirut have been shared on our official twitter handle.