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India’s 5th Aug move violation of international law: Speakers

Islamabad, August 07, 2020 (PPI-OT): Speakers at a webinar have strongly condemned the abrogation of special status of Indian illegally occupied Jammu and Kashmir by the Modi-led Indian fascist regime and termed its division into two union territories as a flagrant violation of international law. The webinar “Changing Demographics of Indian Occupied Kashmir and Understanding the New Domicile Law” was hosted by Kashmir Institute of International Relations (KIIR).

The webinar was attended and addressed by former ambassadors, intellectuals, academicians, legal experts, as well as the representatives of all Parties Hurriyat Conference including Ambassador (Retd) Aizaz Ahmed Chudhary, Ambassador (retd) Ishtiaq Indrabi, justice (retd) Shah Khawar, noted lawyer and expert on international law, Ahmer Bilal Sofi, Muhammad Ali, Ahmed Qureshi, Muhammad Farooq Rehmani, Syed Yousuf Naseem and the KIIR Chairman, Altaf Hussain Wani.

Deliberating on the international and legal dimensions of the Kashmir dispute, the speakers said that the 5th August move and subsequent actions taken by New Delhi viz-a-viz IIOJK constituted a serious violation of the UN resolutions, which strongly bars the Indian state from bringing any change in the status of the disputed territory, unilaterally. Besides violating the international law, the speakers pointed out that the actions fraught with serious political implications were reflective of the India’s imperialistic and hegemonic designs, which, they said, were extremely detrimental to peace and stability in South Asia.

The induction of new domicile law for the citizens of IIOJK, they said, was introduced with a mala fide intention to pave way for settling outsiders in the territory. By changing the demographic complexion of IIOJK, the speakers said, the Modi government’s sole agenda was to erase Kashmir’s distinctive identity and bring a material change in the territory by removing all the constitutional hurdles especially the Article 35-A, which legally acted as strong deterrent to protect the demographic character of the territory.

Referring to Indian government’s settler colonialism agenda, they said that the nefarious plan had been set in motion in IIOJK where the authorities had issued 0.4 million permanent resident certificates (PRCs) to non-state subjects since the new domicile law was enforced.

Apart from this the speakers added that New Delhi had devised a dangerous plan to establish colonies for its forces’ personnel and separate townships for Kashmiri Pundits in the valley. The India’s new domicile law for Kashmir, they said, was replica of Israel’s settler colonialism polices. “The redefinition of Jammu and Kashmir Domicile Law is a disastrous recipe to deprive Kashmiris of their land, resources, jobs, identity, culture, and above all the promised right to self-determination,” they maintained.

The amendments in the law relating to control of building operations in IIOJK, they said, would expedite the process of demographic changes in the territory besides enabling the BJP to materialize its long-cherished goal of turning the Muslim majority into a minority.

The speakers deplored the Indian attempts to delegitimize the Kashmiris’ legitimate struggle for right to self-determination, suppress the freedom sentiment, discredit and debase the Hurriyat leadership, and to dilute Kashmir’s special identity.

Paying glowing tributes to the sacrifices rendered by the Kashmiri people, they said that the people of IIOJK had demonstrated unprecedented courage, resilience and determination in the face of Indian brutality and state repression. They also paid rich tributes to Kashmiri martyrs who have laid down their precious lives in pursuit of the noble cause of freedom from Indian subjugation, lauded the Hurriyat leaders for their unwavering commitment, indomitable role and peerless contribution towards the ongoing liberation struggle against Indian occupation.

The participants of the seminar expressed deep concern over the continued bloodshed, systematic killings of Kashmiri youth by Indian forces in occupied Kashmir and the international community’s policy of indifference and apathy towards the miseries of Kashmiri people. They also voiced their concerns over the prolonged detention of Hurriyat leaders, intellectuals, and lawyers, members of the civil society, businessmen and journalists who were arrested and detained under draconian laws before and after 5th August 2019.

Hailing Pakistan’s continued political, moral and diplomatic support to Kashmir cause and its commitment to peaceful settlement of Kashmir dispute, the speakers urged the prime minister to convene an All Parties Conference (APC) to devise a comprehensive National Action Plan (NAP) to significantly highlight the Indian aggression at international level and to galvanize international support to alleviating the sufferings of Kashmiri people.

They also urged the democratic dispensation of Pakistan to launch a vigorous diplomatic campaign at the international level to stop India’s naked aggression in the occupied Kashmir. They also demanded of the international community to hold the Indian government accountable for the war-crimes being committed by its occupation forces in occupied Kashmir.

A declaration released at the end of the seminar strongly denounced the stepped up Indian state terrorism, genocide of Kashmiri youth and use of excessive force against civilians by Indian occupation forces. It also condemned the recent spate of state-sponsored-violence that resulted in widespread destruction, loss of economy and death of hundreds of Kashmiris particularly the youth, the arrest of minors under the draconian Public Safety Act (PSA). The declaration deplored the Indian naked aggression, unprovoked shelling and targeting of civilian population on the line of control (LoC).

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