Pakistan has proposed the strengthening of the United Nations Military Observer Mission in India and Pakistan, which monitors the Line of Control in Kashmir, as New Delhi’s illegal annexation of the disputed state has heightened tensions between the two South Asian neighbours, according to informed sources.
The request was made by Pakistani Ambassador Maleeha Lodhi during a meeting with a top UN peacekeeping official on Tuesday, as she continued briefing relevant world body officials and diplomats on the grave situation in Indian Occupied Kashmir, now in its fourth week of curfews and lockdown.
Ambassador Lodhi urged Khalid Khairi, acting under-secretary-general of the UN Department of Peacekeeping Operations and political and peace-building Affairs, to take steps to enhance UNMOGIP’s monitoring and strength along the LoC as Indian troops have been repeatedly violating it.
UNMOGIP was deployed in January 1949 to supervise the ceasefire between India and Pakistan in the State of Jammu and Kashmir. While Pakistan allows UN observers to monitor the LoC, India does not. The group, based in Rawalpindi, is composed of 44 military observers, supported by 25 international civilian personnel and 47 local civilian staff.
During Tuesday’s meeting, the Pakistani envoy also said that midnight raids by Indian security personnel have intensified and an atmosphere of fear and intimidation prevails.
She told the acting under-secretary-general that a bigger crisis was waiting to happen as a result of the dire situation in occupied Kashmir. The U.N., she stressed, should act to prevent such a possibility and to keep peace in the restive region. — APP