ASEAN Delegation on Kashmir meets Foreign Secretary Sohail Mahmood

ISLAMABAD, Pakistan: An 18-member delegation of ASEAN Parliamentarians and Civil Society members led by President of Malaysian Consultative Council of Islamic Organization (MAPIM) Haji Mohammad Azmi Hamid called on the Foreign Secretary Sohail Mahmood in Islamabad on Friday.

The delegates included members from Indonesia, Malaysia, Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia and Thailand. The visit has been arranged by MAPIM for evaluation of the situation in the region after Indian government’s recent illegal and unilateral steps to change the internationally recognized disputed status of Indian Occupied Jammu & Kashmir (IOJ&K) and to alter its demographic structure.

Extending a warm welcome to the delegation, the foreign secretary highlighted the importance Pakistan attaches to its multi-faceted ties with ASEAN Countries, both bilaterally and on the regional platform.

The foreign secretary also briefed the delegation in detail on the deteriorating human rights and humanitarian situation in IOJ&K due to inhuman lockdown since August 5, and apprised them about the serious risks to peace and security stemming from India’s belligerent rhetoric and actions. He underscored the importance of the international community’s role in helping to ameliorate the dire situation and to facilitate a peaceful solution of the Jammu & Kashmir dispute in accordance with UN Security Council resolutions.

For its part, the delegation highlighted its mission of acquiring first-hand knowledge about the Kashmir issue, expressed concern over the human rights and humanitarian situation in IOJ&K, and affirmed support for the rights of the Kashmiris and a just and lasting solution of the Kashmir dispute. They also underlined their commitment to continue efforts to raise awareness about the Kashmir situation in the ASEAN region.

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The ASEAN Parliamentary and Civil Society delegation is on a four-day visit to Pakistan.