Pakistan’s talks offer must have reciprocal resonance in Delhi: envoy

Masood Khan encourages youth to build Kashmir information ecosystem, days Masood Khan.

WASHINGTON: Ambassador Masood Khan has said the illegal and unilateral act of the Indian government of revoking special status of Jammu & Kashmir was driven by the fear of the international momentum generated before August 2019. 

Underscoring the need to keep the issue of Kashmir alive at all available forums, including the United Nations, city halls and digital ecosystems, Masood Khan encouraged the youth to establish their own ‘information ecosystems’.

“Today, the existing digital ecosystem was not so hospitable to the Kashmir issue because of the hostile forces. You need to have your own information ecosystem to highlight the right of self-determination,” he said.   

Addressing a special event to mark ‘Youm-e-Istehsal’ Kashmir, the day of exploitation, , Ambassador Masood Khan said that Pakistan has once again made a positive overture by inviting India to engage in a meaningful dialogue on the issues of concern. 

“There should be some resonance of reciprocity from New Delhi as well. It takes two to tango. It can’t be a monologue. It needs to be a dialogue,” he said.

Attended by a large number of Pak-American diaspora, Kashmiris, members of civil society and human rights activists, the event was held in a hybrid mode. 

Messages of President of Pakistan and the Prime Minister of Pakistan were read on the occasion reiterating unswerving commitment to the Kashmir cause.  

In his video message, President Azad Kashmir Sultan Mehmood Chaudhry said that Indian leadership through its illegal act had attempted to change the demography of Jammu & Kashmir.

“With this illegal act, India has exposed itself before the international community. Now everybody knows that India is an elected dictatorship of Hindus against the minorities.” He also highlighted the atrocities being committed in Manipur exposing India further before the international community. 

“I will urge all the Kashmiris, Pakistanis and all those who believe in liberty, dignity and social justice to come forward and support the people of Kashmir in their just right of self-determination,” he said.

 UK Shadow Minister for Legal Aid MP Afzal Khan said that Labor MPs have been urging their government to take action and to hold India accountable. He regretted that similar resolve which was shown by the international community in case of Ukraine was missing towards Kashmir.

He urged UK government not to abdicate its historical responsibility and to play its part in promoting sustainable peace and prosperity in the region. He reiterated his commitment to continue striving for the people of Kashmir “till they achieve their rightful demand which is the implementation of the plebiscite, according to UN resolutions.” 

Human rights activist Shamim Shawal in her message highlighted the plights of Kashmiri youth especially the girls which were being subjected to inhuman treatment. She noted that with the settlement of outsiders in Indian occupied Kashmir, the locals were being denied decent jobs leading to massive youth unemployment.

She said that 9000 girls were missing since 2019 and 181 children were missing since 2022. Quoting figures provided by Indian Ministry of Women and Children Development, she said that 20,000 Kashmiris were languishing in jails. 

President World Kashmir Freedom Movement Muzzamil Ayub Thakur stressed that we must make collective efforts as our existence was at risk. “We must learn to adapt and innovate. We must use every available mechanism to disrupt India’s insidious plans. Today, our remembrance should be a catalyst to act more efficiently and effectively for Pakistan, for Kashmir and for Islam,” Thakur said.

Chancellor East West University Chicago Prof. Wasiullah Khan, addressing the event virtually, said that India from the day one had no intention to hold plebiscite. He said that European model of cooperation could serve as a model for the Asian countries to cooperate and iron out their differences.    

Senator Lt. General Abdul Qayyum emphasized that Pakistan and all peace loving countries who wanted to make United Nation a success must work for UN independence and must stand with all oppressed and suppressed nations. 

Mr. Mohsin Ansari, President Islamic Circle of North America, offered continued support of his organization, the largest humanitarian organization in the Muslim world, for the people of Kashmir.  

Professor Dr. Imtiaz Khan of George Washington University, in his remarks, said that international community has an obligation to resolve the issue of Kashmir. He said that Indian leadership was feeding opium of terrorism to Indian population on daily basis.

He urged Muslim Ummah to collectively become voice of Kashmiris and make efforts for their just cause. 

Chairman World Forum for Peace & Justice Mr. Ghulam Nabi Fai, addressing the gathering, highlighted that Gregory H. Stanton, Founding President of Genocide Watch, had forewarned that Kashmir was on the brink of genocide.

He also recalled the statement of UN Secretary General immediately after illegal act of August 05, 2019 that Kashmir dispute has to be settled in accordance with UN resolutions. He urged greater role of OIC countries towards resolution of the Kashmir dispute. 

Ambassador Masood Khan thanked the speakers for acknowledging the immense sacrifices of the people of Pakistan for the Kashmir cause. 

“Although we are passing through a very dark period of history of Jammu & Kashmir, don’t lose heart. There should be no hopelessness,” he said. 

“Your despondency would also be weaponized by those who want to deny Kashmiris their right to self-determinations,” he continued.

Masood Khan said that “Pakistan is a resilient nation. “We have threats but we will survive. We would make our mark in the history of nations. No power, no hostility can stop us from realizing our dream. The holistic dream includes Jammu & Kashmir,” he concluded.     

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