Pakistan’s Embassy in Ankara observes Kashmir ‘exploitation day’

Pakistan’s Embassy in Ankara observes Kashmir ‘exploitation day’

‘Kashmiris are more determined to get their legitimate right to self-determination,’ says Pakistan's charge d'affaires

By Necva Tastan

ISTANBUL (AA) - Pakistan’s Embassy in Ankara marked the fourth anniversary of India’s actions that stripped Indian-administered Jammu and Kashmir of its special status.

Speaking at an event marking the “Day of Exploitation of Kashmir,” Pakistan's Charge d'Affaires Abbas Sarwar Qureshi said: "The Kashmiri struggle is alive, stronger than it was before August 05, 2019 and Kashmiris are more determined to get their legitimate right to self-determination, the right promised to Kashmiris by UN, Pakistan and India," according to a statement issued by the embassy.

Acknowledging Türkiye's "principled" stance on the Jammu and Kashmir issue, Qureshi thanked Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan for his support to the Kashmir cause at international forums.

He also expressed satisfaction on the “positive trajectory of Pakistan-Türkiye bilateral relations and underscored that the unique bond of brotherhood between the two countries will continue to grow stronger,” according to the embassy statement.

According to the embassy statement, Burhan Kayaturk, a member of the Turkish parliament, also spoke at the event and said: “The right to self-determination was promised to the Kashmiri people by the United Nations and the Indian leadership itself, but still after seven decades the promise remains unfulfilled.”

Gen. Guray Alpar, the president of the Institute of Strategic Thinking (SDE), stressed that the international community should play its due role in putting an end to “human rights abuses” in the Indian-administered Kashmir and “holding of a fair and impartial plebiscite under auspices of the United Nations as enshrined in the relevant UN Security Council resolutions,” according to the statement.

Meanwhile, Pakistan’s Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif said on Twitter: “Today marks the completion of four years since India deprived Kashmiris of their statehood by unilaterally annexing Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir. The last four years have represented the culmination of the worst human rights abuses including but not limited to the demographic changes, issuance of fake domiciles, internet shutdown, complete information blackout and imprisonment of Kashmiri leadership of all hues and colours.”

- Kashmir issue

Kashmir, a Muslim-majority Himalayan region, is held by India and Pakistan in part, but claimed by both in full. A small sliver of the region is also controlled by China.

Since they were partitioned in 1947, India and Pakistan have fought three wars – in 1948, 1965, and 1971 – two of them over Kashmir.

New Delhi revoked the special status of the state of Jammu and Kashmir on Aug. 5, 2019. Islamabad says the move is illegal, and has since downgraded diplomatic ties and halted trade. Official bilateral talks remain suspended since then.

India, for its part, accuses Pakistan of helping Kashmir groups who have for years battled its security forces, something Islamabad denies, saying it only provides moral and diplomatic support to Kashmiris for self-determination.

On Wednesday, India’s top court began hearing petitions challenging the legislation that stripped the disputed region’s statehood.

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