JEDDAH: AJK President Sardar Masood Khan has appealed to the Independent Permanent Human Rights Commission (IPHRC) of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) to help the people of Jammu and Kashmir to reverse the process of colonization and demographic changes in J&K. “People are facing death destruction, disposition and destitution. India is stealing Kashmiris land. Land grab must be stopped”, he said.
Masood Khan made these remarks during a detailed presentation he made to the 18-member OIC-IPHRC which has been closely following the situation in J&K for years.
The Commission had invited the AJK President as to brief them in the light of his expertise in the field of human rights in his career as a diplomat and his assessment during his current position.
This was the first time that a President of Azad Kashmir had addressed and briefed the Commission in its Headquarters. Many Commissioners made statements supporting the right to self-determination of Kashmiris demanded an end to repression in IOJK and underlined the urgent need for the resolution of the Jammu and Kashmir dispute. They also interacted with the AJK President.
The Commission’s meeting, which was also attended by OIC member States was chaired by Mr. Adama Nana and organized by the Commission’s Executive Director Mr. Marghoob Salim Butt.
The AJK President said that Azad Kashmir was looking forward to the visit of Mr. Yousef Al Dobeay, OIC Special Envoy for Jammu and Kashmir, in the near future.
President Masood Khan told the audience that as the Ummah, Muslims all over the world were obligated to follow the edict of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH): “Assist any person who is oppressed, whether he is Muslim or not”. Islam, he said, recognizes and upholds the right to life, freedom and justice; and protection against discrimination, torture and abuse of power; freedom of religion, belief, thought and speech; and protection of property. “All these rights were being trampled in IOJK today,” he said
The President told the Commissioners that India had laid a siege to the territory and was killing, blinding, maiming, torturing and disappearing its inhabitants. Women have been subjected to rape and molestation and their bodies were being objectified and fetishized. Some 13,000 young boys have been abducted and put in jails incommunicado. Kashmiris have not been able to sell their crops, walnuts, apples and saffron worth billions of dollars.
The President invited the Commission to implement its recommendations given in its 2017 report to start a Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions Movement against India; and request the Islamic Development Bank and the Islamic Solidarity Fund to initiate projects in the livelihood sector, health and education in J&K and refugee camps in AJK.
In this context, he said that the OIC should step forward to help Kashmiri students and youth, studying and working abroad, whose education and jobs have been disrupted due to India’s siege. This could form a first step towards the establishment of a humanitarian corridor in Kashmir.