Sardar Masood discusses Kashmir situation with visiting UK delegation

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ISLAMABAD: AJK President Sardar Masood Khan, has said that the international community, especially the United Nations must take cognizance of the grave human rights violations taking place in the Indian Occupied Kashmir.

The President made these remarks while interacting with a British delegation from Rochdale, led by Tony Lloyd, Member UK Parliament. The delegation also comprised of Councillor Muhammad Zaman, Mayor of Rochdale; Mr. Allen Brett, Leader of the Rochdale Council; Councillor Aasim Rashid, Chair of Pakistani and Kashmiri Councillors Forum North of England; Councillor Sultan Ali, former Mayor of Rochdale; Mrs. Razia Shamim OBE; and Mushtaq Lasharie CBE; Chairman Third World Solidarity.

During the interaction, the President informed the delegation of the grave human rights violations taking place in IOK. He said that innocent Kashmiris are being killed, incarcerated and maimed, simply because they demand their right to self-determination as guaranteed under international law and the United Nations Security Council Resolutions passed in the late 1940s’ and early 1950s’. President AJK also strongly condemned Indian moves to change the demography of IOK which he said were in violation of international law and conventions.

MP Tony Lloyd said that Rochdale is home to a large Pakistani-Kashmiri diaspora who actively raise the issue with its parliamentary representatives. He said that every passing day the situation in IOK is deteriorating and is a major concern for us. He also expressed his concern on the lack of international attention to this long-standing issue and the worsening human rights situation. He insisted that stopping the human rights violations and ascertaining the right to self-determination of the people of Kashmir is central to the peaceful resolution of this conflict.

In a joint press conference held after the meeting, the President thanked Shah Mahmood Qureshi, Foreign Minister of Pakistan for effectively representing the people of Pakistan and Kashmir by highlighting the Kashmir issue in a resolute and dynamic manner.

The President also briefed the media on his recent statement delivered at Organization of Islamic Cooperation’s meeting of the Contact Group on Jammu and Kashmir and the Annual Coordination Meeting attended by Foreign Ministers of member countries held on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly session in New York.

Councillor Aasim Rashid thanked the President, the Government AJK and Pakistan for actively taking up the issue at all international forums. He said that prosperity and stability in the region depend entirely on the resolution of the Kashmir issue. He assured that the diaspora community will continue to create awareness on the issue and especially the human rights violations taking place in IOK.