Masood briefs Malaysian delegation on Kashmir, Kuala Lumpur-AJK cultural centre to be set-up

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ISLAMABAD: Ahead of Prime Minister Imran Khan’s proposed visit to Kuala Lumper by the end of this month, a nine member delegation led by Mohd Azmi Abdul Hamid, President of MAPIM (Malaysian Consultative Council for Islamic Organization) held a meeting with AJk President sardar Masood in Islamabad. MAPIM is an influential organisation in Malaysia with networks in ASEAN nations and beyond.

MAPIM was introduced to Pakistan Government by Nafees Zakaria when he was working in Kuala Lumpur as Pakistan High Commissioner. He arranged many tour of MAPIM leaders to Islamabad and Muzaffarabad. 

Talking to delegation, Sardar Masood Khan thanked Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad and the Malaysian nation for their what he called the principled stand and strong support to the people of Jammu and Kashmir in the aftermath of August 5, 2019. He saluted the Malaysian leadership that after India threatened to cut imports of palm oil, aluminum, gas and computer equipment from Malaysia in retaliation for its principled position on Kashmir. The AJK President said that the Malaysian Prime Minister had rightly characterized India’s action in Jammu & Kashmir as “invasion and occupation”.

Sardar Masood Khan also commended Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad’s criticism of the new citizenship law in India designed to discriminate against Muslims. The Malaysian Prime Minister, he said, has rightly pointed out that “people in India are dying because of this law”. The President said that India wanted to remould the disputed territory of Jammu and Kashmir and now the whole of India as a Hindu nation, crush Kashmiri Muslims and relegate the status of Indian Muslims to aliens.

Azmi Abdul Hamid said that Malaysia, in collaboration with Azad Kashmir, would establish a cultural centre in Muzaffarabad. This, he said, would be the flagship project of AJK and Malaysian cooperation. He added that MAPIM would also explore possibilities of trade ties between Azad Kashmir and Malaysia.

Talking about linkages between AJK and Malaysia, Mr. Mohd Azmi said that linkages would be made between the Mosques in Azad Kashmir and Malaysia. One such Mosque would be identified in Muzaffarabad. He proposed that trade between AJK and Malaysia could cover food, tourism, hospitality and the Halal meat industry. Masood said that this scope could be widened to include Kashmiri products and handicrafts such as Pashmina shawls, wooden handicrafts, papier-mache products, precious stones, horticulture, agriculture and fruits (apples, apricot, walnuts and mangoes). The two sides would follow up on these joint projects and programmes.