Resolution of Kashmir dispute vital for peace in South Asia: FM

Pakistan criticizes India for refusing journalists to enter Azad Kashmir

Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi has said that a peaceful and just resolution of the longstanding Jammu and Kashmir dispute is important for durable peace, security and development in the region. The foreign minister said this while addressing Islamabad Security Dialogue today [Saturday].

He said India’s illegal and unilateral actions of 5 August 2019 in Indian illegally occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IIOJK), accompanied by unabated repression of Kashmiris, had seriously undermined the prospects of peace.

Shah Mahmood Qureshi reiterated that India must halt violations of human rights and fundamental freedoms in IIOJK; reverse its unilateral and illegal actions including the demographic changes in the occupied territory; and implement the UN Security Council resolutions which guarantee the Kashmiris’ right to self-determination through a free and impartial plebiscite under UN auspices. He said Pakistan being a responsible country is striving for peace, prosperity and connectivity in the region.

He said Pakistan in principle is also ready to consider East-West connectivity to help address challenges of poverty and under-development in South Asia. He said for that, we obviously need a willing partner that demonstrates good faith and is committed to creating an enabling environment for meaningful engagement.

The foreign minister said unfortunately an extremist ideological regime in India, which thrives on anti-Muslim hate and hostility with Pakistan, will do anything to retain its predominantly Hindu electoral support base. Shah Mahmood Qureshi said the recent firing of a supersonic missile by India into Pakistan’s territory reflected India’s disregard for aviation safety as well as regional peace and stability. “This incident is consistent with India’s irresponsible conduct. It must be addressed by the international community, including the UN Security Council. Despite provocations, Pakistan continues to act with maximum restraint and responsibility,” he added. The foreign minister said India must rethink its policy of fomenting destabilization in Pakistan and embrace a progressive agenda that can benefit the entire region. NNI

NNI The onus remains on India to create an enabling environment, he added. NNI


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