Kashmir Solidarity Day: Added significance

FEBRUARY 05 again saw the people of Pakistan and Azad Kashmir demonstrating their unbreakable bond and affinity with oppressed Kashmiri people across the other side. Kashmir Solidarity Day was marked by a host of events including mass rallies, conventions and formation of human chains at points joining Pakistan and Kashmir, thus giving a clear message to both India and the world that the people of Pakistan will never leave their Kashmiri brethren alone in their just struggle for right to self determination. In their separate messages also, President Mamnoon Hussain and Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif very emphatically reiterated Pakistan’s stance for resolution of the lingering dispute in accordance with the UN resolutions and aspirations of Kashmiri people.
Notably, the day is being observed since 1990 and in our view this year the day assumed greater importance given the new turn freedom movement has taken in the Held Valley following the martyrdom of Burhan Wani and the machinations adopted by Modi-led Indian government to unilaterally alter the demography of occupied Kashmir. Reiteration of support on the part of Pakistani leadership and the people has sent a very loud and clear message to Indian government that come what may, they will not back track from their principled stance on Kashmir dispute. In fact this dispute is not only territorial in nature but has greater humanitarian dimension and it can only be resolved through democratic process by allowing the people of Kashmir to exercise their choice through an impartial plebiscite under the auspices of the UN. In the not so distant past, we have seen the people of East Timor and South Sudan and most recently the people of Scotland exercising this very right. Denying the same to the oppressed Kashmiri people clearly exposes the double standard of the world powers. Whilst the new UN Secretary General has offered to play the role of an honest mediator, it is also imperative that the so-called champions of human rights force India to accept the birth right of Kashmiri people. We have a strong Diaspora in important capitals and we need to aggressively engage them to sensitise the public opinion there about the plight of Kashmiri people and the need for resolution of this outstanding dispute not only for regional but world peace at large. We expect that solidarity day will be followed by relentless efforts to keep Kashmir dispute in limelight at world forums as well as at the public level in western countries in order to force the world to act over this unfinished agenda of the partition.

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