Kashmiris will achieve their right to self-determination: Masood Khan

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ISLAMABAD: AJK President Sardar Masood Khan has said that Shiekh Abdullah’s National Conference and Mehbooba Mufti’s People Democratic Party have all along been a party to India’s massacre, arrests and blinding of the Kashmiri people and we cannot equate the leaders of these parties to the true representative leadership of the Kashmiris.

He made these remarks while addressing a roundtable on “Self-determination Day: Voices from Kashmir”, jointly organised by the Institute of Strategic Studies Islamabad (ISSI) and the Ministry of Kashmir Affairs and Gilgit Baltistan.

Masood Khan thanked China, Turkey, Malaysia, Finland, Germany and Sweden who have spoken boldly in favour of the just struggle of the Kashmiris. He also informed that the Malaysian Parliament has founded a Kashmir Advocacy Group and the ASEAN has also expressed their interest in establishing a similar group.

Masood paid tribute to the true Kashmiri leadership, Syed Ali Gillani, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, Yaseen Malik, Aasia Andrabi, Ashraf Sehrai and Shabbir Shah for their resolve and commitment. He said that there is no way Mehbooba Mufti and Abdullah Shiekh represent the true sentiments of the Kashmiri people.

Ambassador Aizaz Ahmad Chaudhry, DG ISS, in his welcome remarks said that the unilateral action taken by India in Jammu and Kashmir is illegal and in violation of the UN resolutions and the agreements signed between Pakistan and India. Mr. Altaf Wani, Chairman Kashmir Institute of International Relations informed that genocide is taking place in IOJK and the identity, culture and very life of the Kashmiris are at risk of annihilation.

Other speakers including Mr. Khalid Rehman, Executive Director IPS, said that India has continued to violate its commitments with the UN and in turn, proved that the world order has failed in maintaining peace and security. He added that we need to bring forward the facts of the dispute and present a long-term strategy for resolution of the Kashmir issue. Dr Syed Nazir Gillani said that the UN has acknowledged the right to self-determination of the Kashmir people and we must use all the mechanisms present under the UN Charter for resolving the Kashmir issue.

Syed Abdullah Gillani, convenor APHC, said that today is a day of introspection. He said that today is a day to renew our commitments towards the resolution of the Kashmir dispute adding that the people of Kashmir will continue their struggle till the last Indian soldier leaves the land of Jammu and Kashmir.

The event was attended by leading diplomats, APHC representatives, academics, human rights activists and members of the print and electronic media.