Pakistan fully supports Kashmiri brethren, marks Youm-e-Istehsal

Pakistan officially marks Youm-e-Istehsal (Exploitation Day) today (August 5) to protest against the BJP-led Indian government for illegally stripping Articles 370 and 35A of the Indian Constitution that changed the special autonomous status of the Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IIOJK) in 2019.

President Alvi calls upon the world to hold India accountable for HR violations in IIOJK. Alvi said that Pakistan honour the sacrifices of the Kashmiris in their just struggle for their right to self-determination.

The President said India’s actions of 5 August 2019 contravene several the United Nations Security Council resolutions which stipulated that the final disposition of the State of Jammu and Kashmir will be made in accordance with the will of the people through a free and impartial plebiscite conducted under the auspices of the United Nations.

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President Alvi said Pakistan will continue to stand shoulder to shoulder with our Kashmiri brothers and sisters in their just struggle.

He called upon the international community to take practical steps to hold India accountable for its gross and widespread human rights violations in IIOJK and to facilitate a peaceful resolution of this long-standing dispute.

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Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, in his message on Youm-e-Istehsal, said the just struggle of the people of IIOJK to realize their right of self-determination, guaranteed under several resolutions of the UN Security Council, is being suppressed through brutal use of force by the Indian occupation forces.

The prime minister said the Jammu and Kashmir dispute has been on the United Nations agenda for over seven decades. This long-standing dispute must be addressed and resolved with a sense of urgency and responsibility.

He said by deploying additional troops and imposing unprecedented media restrictions, since 5th August 2019, the Indian occupation forces have turned IIOJK into the largest prison on the planet.

He said the human rights situation in IIOJK has seriously deteriorated over the last three years.

In his message, Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari said that India took illegal and unilateral steps in the IIOJK in a bid to change its internationally recognized disputed status and to alter the demographic structure of the occupied territory.

Developments in the last three years have made it amply clear that India has been relentlessly pursuing its nefarious design of furthering demographic changes in IIOJK. It is doing so through repressive measures including outrageous gerrymandering to create Hindu-dominated constituencies at the expense of Muslim majorities, the issuance of millions of fake domicile certificates to non-Kashmiris, and modifying laws on ownership of land and property.

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These measures constitute nothing but an Indian attempt to obliterate the distinct Kashmiri identity in violation of the United Nations Security Council Resolutions and international law, including the 4th Geneva Convention.

The presence of 900,000 troops has turned IIOJK into the most militarized zone in the world. The human suffering of Kashmiris inflicted through extra-judicial killings, arbitrary detentions, incarceration of the true Kashmiri leadership, and harassment and other gross violations of human rights, are well-documented and have been condemned worldwide. More than 650 Kashmiris have been martyred since 5 August 2019, including over 130 in the year 2022 alone.

India’s reprehensible treatment of Kashmiri journalists and human rights defenders has revealed that it would not hesitate to go to any extent for the perpetuation of its illegal occupation.

India’s illegal and unilateral actions of 5 August 2019 and those taken afterward demonstrate the sheer disregard for international law, views of the international community, and the aspirations of the Kashmiri people. Indian state-terrorism against the Kashmiris has been extensively documented through numerous reports and video evidence recorded and presented by human rights and humanitarian organizations as well as the international media.

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Punjab Chief Minister Pervez Elahi also showed complete support for the Kashmiri brethren.