ISLAMABAD, Pakistan: As part of Pakistan’s ongoing efforts to draw the attention of the international community to the alarming situation in the Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu & Kashmir (IIOJK), the Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari has addressed a letter to the Secretary General of the United Nations Antonio Guterres on May 31, 2022.
The letter apprises the UN secretary general of the circumstances of the Hurriyat leader Yasin Malik’s conviction in a manifestly dubious and politically motivated case filed by the Indian National Investigation Agency, his chronic ailments and the ruthless treatment meted out to him in Indian jails.
It also highlights that the incarceration of Yasin Malik, his sham trial on concocted charges, his malicious conviction and the attempt to portray the legitimate freedom struggle of the Kashmiris as terrorism, illustrate India’s blatant disregard of its international legal obligations.
The foreign minister underscored that the malicious trial and conviction of Yasin Malik was a part of the Indian government’s ongoing attempts to persecute and repress the Kashmiris and their leadership and to implicate them in fictitious and motivated cases.
Bilawal Bhutto noted that by denying a fair trial to the Hurriyat leader, arbitrarily detaining him and meting inhumane treatment to him in jail since 2019, India is in contravention of international human rights law, in particular the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.
The foreign minister also cautioned that in line with the well-documented pattern of Indian behaviour, there was credible risk of “custodial murder” in case of the detained Kashmir leader.
The foreign minister urged the UN secretary general to play his role in promoting a peaceful resolution of the Jammu and Kashmir dispute in accordance with the relevant UNSC resolutions; and called upon the international community to:
- Take immediate cognizance of India’s outrageous targeting of indigenous Kashmiri leadership through motivated cases;
- Prevail upon India to dismiss all the baseless charges against Yasin Malik and ensure his immediate release from prison;
iii. Urge India to release all other Kashmiri leaders incarcerated on trumped-up charges and allow the people of Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir to determine their own future through a free and impartial UN-sponsored plebiscite as prescribed in the relevant UN Security Council resolutions;
- Compel and counsel India to end its egregious violations of human rights against the people of Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir and implement the recommendations of the two OHCHR Kashmir Reports;
- Prevail upon India to repeal draconian laws including UAPA, and accept a UN-supervised investigation into the human rights situation in the Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir, allow access to independent monitors for assessment of the ground situation in Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir, and to allow the Kashmiris to determine their own future through a free and impartial plebiscite under the auspices of the United Nations as enshrined in the relevant UN Security Council resolutions.
Meanwhile, in his remarks at the weekly briefing in Islamabad on Friday, the Spokesperson of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Asim Iftikhar Ahmad said that the Indian Occupation Forces have stepped up extra-judicial killings of Kashmiris, particularly targeting Kashmiri youth following the malafide conviction and sentencing of Hurriyat leader Yasin Malik in a grossly suspicious and contrived case.
The Spokesperson said that Pakistan strongly condemns the extra-judicial killing of 10 more Kashmiri youth in staged “cordon-and-search” operation in IIOJK during the past week.
Asim Iftikhar reiterated Pakistan’s call on the international community to hold India accountable for its gross and systematic violations of human rights and international humanitarian law in IIOJK.
The Spokesperson said that Pakistan also urges the international community to play its role in facilitating a just and peaceful resolution of the Jammu and Kashmir dispute in accordance with the relevant UN Security Council resolutions and the wishes of the Kashmiri people, for durable peace and stability in South Asia.