WASHINGTON: Secretary General of World Kashmir Awareness Forum (WKAF) Dr Ghulam Nabi Fai has said Kashmiris demand the implementation of the UN resolution of August 13, 1948, that acknowledged their right to self-determination.
According to Kashmir media service, Dr Fai in a statement issued in Washington said Kashmiris in Jammu and Kashmir, the US and worldwide will observe the 75th anniversary of the unimplemented UN Commission for India and Pakistan (UNCIP) resolution of August 13, 1948.
He said the resolution states that ‘the Government of India and the Government of Pakistan reaffirm their wish that the future status of the state of Jammu and Kashmir shall be determined in accordance with the will of the people.’ He said there was much in the resolution that was controversial between India and Pakistan but the proposal of a plebiscite was not.
“That is clear from the statement made on January 28, 1948 by Ambassador Fernand van Langenhove of Belgium as the President of the Security Council. He said that ‘the documents at our disposal show agreement between the parties on the following points: the plebiscite must be conducted under conditions which will ensure complete impartiality; and the plebiscite will therefore be held under the aegis of the United Nations,” he added.
Dr Fai reminded that the US, the UK, and France have traditionally been committed supporters of the plebiscite agreement as the only way to resolve the Kashmir dispute.
They sponsored all of the Security Council resolutions which called for a plebiscite. Their commitment was indicated by a personal appeal made by America’s President Harry Truman and Britain’s Prime Minister Clement Atlee that differences over demilitarization be submitted to arbitration by the Plebiscite Administrator, a distinguished American war hero: Admiral Chester Nimitz.
In addition, Senator Frank Graham of America visited the Subcontinent as the UN representative to negotiate the demilitarization of Kashmir prior to the plebiscite. India objected to American acting as a Plebiscite Administrator.
Dr Fai said if this day could be observed in peace, it could have been a fitting tribute to the members of the UNCIP who had adopted the resolution unanimously.
But the studied unconcern by the United Nations has given a sense of total impunity to India. It has also created the impression that the United Nations is invidiously selective about the application of the principles of human rights and democracy. He pointed out that frustration at India’s intransigence and the world’s hesitation to fulfill its commitment drove the people of Kashmir to be more assertive in their struggle.
He added that in the past 33 years of struggle, since 1990 alone, Kashmiris have suffered the loss of more than 100,000 civilians – men, women and children, and have borne the perpetration of countless atrocities by more than 900,000 Indian military and paramilitary forces concentrated in Kashmir as an army of occupation.
Dr Fai pointed out that India’s occupation of Kashmir has been left undisturbed by the international community, even though its validity has never been accepted. At no stage, however, have the people of Kashmir shown themselves to be reconciled to it.
Kashmir’s record of opposition to its annexation by the Indian Union can by no standard be reckoned as less genuinely demonstrated than that of the countries of Eastern Europe under the dominance of the Soviet Union. But while the popular revolt in the countries of Eastern Europe was observed and reported by the international media, that in Kashmir has remained largely hidden from the world’s view.
That is the reason that the New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) has said that ‘news media in Kashmir is at the brink of extinction.’
Today Dr Fai said the consensus is that Kashmir conflict remains the underlying cause of the nuclear confrontation between the two neighboring countries. Without a just and lasting peace in Kashmir that vindicates self-determination, trying to reduce missile and nuclear arsenals in South Asia will be an exercise in futility.