Verbal duel at the UN


Malik Ashraf
THE Indian Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj in her address to the UN General Assembly dubbed Pakistan as “ the pre-eminent export factory for terror” and also referring to the UN resolutions on Kashmir said that they had been overtaken by the events, meaning thereby that they had lost their relevance. She also termed Occupied Kashmir as an integral part of India. Pakistan’s permanent representative to the UN Dr Maleeha Lodhi using her right to respond gave a very hard hitting reply to the convulsions of the Indian foreign minister. Citing instances of acts of terrorism sponsored by India and the aggression shown by her against neighbouring countries besides the genocide of Kashmiris in the occupied Kashmir, she emphatically declared that India was “mother of terrorism” in South Asia. She also strongly repudiated the Indian claims of Kashmir being its integral part. It was a brilliant exposition of the ground realities designed to unmask the real face of India before the world community and also to remind the world of its obligations in regards to the highlighted issues.
Indian involvement in terrorism is a proven fact. Former Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Sigh admitted Indian interference in Balochistan when he met the former Prime Minister of Pakistan Yousaf Raza Gilani at Sharmul Sheikh in Egypt. The Deputy leader of the TTP Latifullah Mehsud who was arrested by the NATO forces in Afghanistan in 2013 confessed support of RAW and Afghan intelligence NDS for carrying out acts of terrorism in Pakistan. The Indian security advisor Devol is on record to have talked about dealing with Pakistan through state terrorism. And above all the capture of Kalbhushan Yadav, a serving officer of the India Navy who has confessed having supported insurgency in Balochistan and acts of terrorism in the country, leaves no doubt in regards to Indian involvement in state-terrorism.
The Indian forces have killed one hundred thousand Kashmiris and their atrocities and brazen human rights violations are continuing unabated. Lodhi rightly called it ‘genocide’. International human rights organizations like Amnesty International have been keeping a close watch on violation of human rights in the occupied Kashmir and in a number of reports have unraveled heart-rending episodes of cruelty towards the people of Kashmir with impunity. During the current wave of uprising the Indians have used pallet guns to disfigure and maim thousand of Kashmiris, who undeterred by the unrivaled oppression continue to demand their right of self-determination. Notwithstanding these irrefutable ground realities India unabashedly calls Pakistan ‘pre-eminent factory of export of terrorism’ and claims Kashmir is its integral part, as the UN resolution had been overtaken by the events. Maleeha was right in pointing out that the law and moral obligations did not have an expiry date. Maleeha was right to observe that the Indian stance had no legal basis and she was occupying Kashmir against the will of the people.
The implementation of UN resolutions on Kashmir remains the obligation of the UN after the failure of the bilateral arrangement under Simla Agreement as per its charter. Article 103 of UN Charter says “ In the event of a conflict between the obligations of the members of the UN under the present charter and their obligations under any other international agreement, their obligations under the present charter will prevail” What it means is that the UN resolutions on Kashmir will take precedence over all other international agreements on the same issue. So Pakistan is very much within its right to invoke UN resolutions, after having been frustrated to find solution through the bilateral arrangement. Now coming to the Indian claims about Kashmir being an integral part of India it is pertinent to mention that the UN through its resolutions 91 and 122 had repudiated Indian stance that the issue of accession of Kashmir had been resolved by the constituent assembly of Kashmir. These resolutions reiterated that the question of accession could not be resolved by any means other than enunciated in the UN resolutions on the subject. This proves beyond any doubt that the Indian claims of Kashmir being an integral part of India represent travesty of the facts and lack any legal basis.
But unfortunately the US and some of its allies who wield considerable influence in the UN and among the international community are looking the other way and see these issues through the prism of their strategic, political and commercial interest rather than judging them on the touchstone of the internationally recognized principles as enshrined in the UN charter. Their indifference and hypocritical posturing on these issues encourages India to turn Kashmir into a killing field. India is being propped up as a counter-weight to the rising Chinese influence in the region and beyond and in the pursuance of this objective they have put blinkers on their eyes.
In regards to the nuclear issue, also they have adopted a discriminatory policy. While relentless efforts are being made to bolster Indian claims as a regional super power by helping her to enhance its nuclear capabilities through civil nuclear technology transfer agreement, NSG waiver and permanent membership of the prestigious organization, Pakistan is being denied similar treatment. All these steps in brazen violation of the Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty are encouraging India to commit acts of aggression against its neighbours and the continued violations of the ceasefire line in Kashmir and the working boundary between the two countries are rating examples of the unabated Indian aggression towards Pakistan. The world community as urged by Pakistan must take notice of these developments in the interest of peace and stability in the region.
— The writer is freelance columnist based in Islamabad.

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