IIOJK’s grim situation warrants global initiative

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All Parties Hurriyat Conference leaders while paying glowing tributes to the victims of Sopore massacre have said that the deteriorating situation in Indian illegally occupied Jammu and Kashmir warrants an international initiative on the Kashmir dispute.

Over 60 civilians were martyred and more than 400 shops and residential houses were gutted on this day in 1993 after Indian soldiers set ablaze the Sopore town of Baramulla district. The victim families are still awaiting justice while the perpetrators of the heinous crime are roaming scot free.

The APHC leaders Ghulam Muhammad Khan Sopori, Zamruda Habib, Yasmeen Raja, Farida Bahenji, Khadim Hussain, Sibte Shabbir Qummi, Dr Musaib, Maulana Sajid Nadvi and Muhammad Aqib in their statements deplored that Indian troops were perpetrating crimes against humanity and war crimes to suppress the Kashmiris’ freedom struggle. They demanded an impartial international probe into all the massacres in the occupied territory to punish the perpetrators.

Meanwhile, the United Nations in a report has said Indian actions in illegally occupied Jammu and Kashmir over the years have impaired the peacekeeping responsibilities of the UN Military Observer Group in India and Pakistan, which monitors the Line of Control and Working Boundary. The UNMOGIP in its audit report maintained that the military observers have no freedom of movement to conduct operational tasks on the LoC and Working Boundary in IIOJK and called for measures to overcome those challenges. The report said the military observers and international staff experience long delays in obtaining visas to travel to IIOJK.

The APHC-AJK leaders at a conference in Islamabad paid rich tributes to the martyrs of the Sopore massacre. They said the sacrifices of the Kashmiri martyrs will not be allowed to go waste and their mission will be accomplished at all costs.

On the other hand, the World Kashmir Awareness Forum, a Washington-based advocacy body, displayed messages on mobile billboard trucks in Washington and New York, calling upon the United Nations to fulfill its pledge towards the people of Jammu and Kashmir of granting them their right to self-determination. The trucks moved about the streets on the Kashmiris’ Right to Self-Determination Day observed on Thursday, the 5th January. The electronic screens on the mobile digital trucks carried messages such as “UN obligated to implement its resolutions on Kashmir”, “Freedom for all: Freedom for Kashmir”, “Stop Indian military and demographic terrorism in Kashmir” and “Hold India accountable for war crimes in Kashmir”.—KMS