JEDDAH: An emergency meeting in Jeddah of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation’s Contact Group on Jammu and Kashmir, called in response to the recent killings of 20 Kashmiri civilians at the hands of Indian occupation forces, condemned the violence and offered support for the efforts of people in the region to secure the rights.
Pakistani Foreign Secretary Tehmina Janjua led his country’s delegation at the meeting. It was chaired by Ambassador Abdullah Al-Alim, the OIC special envoy on Jammu & Kashmir, and the other participants included delegations from Azerbaijan, Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Niger.
It was unanimously decided that the OIC will contact the Indian Government on this issue and urge to take effective measures to ensure stop of human rights violation in Kashmir.
In his opening remarks, Al-Alim, on behalf of the OIC secretary-general, condemned the killing of innocent civilians and reiterated the OIC’s principled position on supporting the people of Jammu and Kashmir in achieving their legitimate rights, including self determination. He emphasized that the conflict must be resolved in accordance with the aspirations of the Kashmiri people and United Nations Security Council resolutions.
Pakistan’s Foreign Secretary Tehmina Janjua briefed the participants on the history of Indian aggression and a recent escalation in atrocities against Kashmiri civilians; the horrific rape and murder of eight-year-old Asifa Bano in Rasana, a village near the city of Kathua; and gross violations of human rights in the valley. She rejected policies such as occupation and oppression and reaffirmed Pakistan’s diplomatic, moral and political support to the people of Indian-occupied Jammu and Kashmir.
Janjua thanked the OIC for its continued support in the Kashmir dispute, which she said is threatening peace and stability in South Asia. She added that Pakistan is determined to resolve the 70-year-old dispute through dialogue.
Ghulam Muhammad Safi, a representative of the Kashmiri people, told the group about incidents of rape, loot, torture and routine killings in Indian-occupied Jammu & Kashmir. He submitted a memorandum on the human-rights situation in the region, to be passed on to the OIC’s Council of Foreign Ministers.
The Contact Group on Jammu and Kashmir was formed in 1994 to coordinate OIC policy on the dispute, reflecting the solidarity of the organization and the Islamic Ummah with the people there.