Pakistan’s Ambassador to the United Nations, Munir Akram, mourned the demise of the “great” Kashmiri leader, Syed Ali Gilani, with the hope that the struggle to secure self-determination and freedom for Jammu and Kashmir will continue with “renewed vigour and determination.”
“The Pakistan Mission to the UN and I join the freedom-loving people of Jammu and Kashmir and the Pakistani nation in mourning the irreparable loss of the great Kashmiri leader, and epitome of Kashmir’s struggle for freedom and self determination,” Ambassador Akram said.
“In this hour of grief, our thoughts and prayers are with Geelani Sahab’s family,” he said, and expressed “deepest condolences” to the All Parties Hurriyat Conference and the Kashmiri People.
“In Kashmir’s freedom struggle, Syed Ali Shah Geelani served as a beacon of strength and a symbol of resistance against India’s brutal oppression,” the Pakistani envoy said, adding that he fought incessantly for the right of self-determination of Kashmiris.
“His principled stance and the moral force that underpinned it remained decisive in resisting the illegal occupation of Jammu and Kashmir,” he said.
“Geelani Sahab was one of the strongest defenders of the existence and preservation of Pakistan and believed that Jammu and Kashmir was a part of Pakistan and, through resolute struggle for freedom, will ultimately join Pakistan”.
“Like Nelson Mandella, he was incarcerated but he remained steadfast and never succumbed.
Even torture, inhuman and degrading treatment by Indian occupation forces could not dissuade him from his indomitable resolve to fight for freedom of Kashmiris”.
“In recognition of Geelani sahib’s heroic leadership of the Kashmiri freedom struggle, and his love for Pakistan, Prime Minister Imran Khan has declared a Day of Mourning in Pakistan…”
“I am confident that the people of Kashmir and Pakistan, inspired by the example of Syed Geelani sahib, will continue the struggle to secure self-determination and freedom for Jammu and Kashmir with renewed vigor and determination.”
Dr. Ghulam Nabi Fai, secretary-general of World Kashmir Awareness Forum, an advocacy group, said in a voice chocked with emotion that the passing of Geelani sahib has orphaned the Kashmiri nation.
He paid rich tributes to his sterling leadership and commitment to the cause of Kashmiri people’s struggle for their UN-pledged right of self-determination.
Fai called Geelani sahib a symbol of sacrifice, courage and dedication and called on the people of Kashmir to follow his example and step up their movement to secure Kashmir freedom from India’s yoke.—KMS