‘Obliged’ to raise voice of oppressed Kashmiris, says Nawaz Sharif
Undeterred by India’s stern response for interfering into its internal matters, Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on Tuesday said that he was “obliged” to raise the voice for 'oppressed' Kashmiris.
Terming Kashmir as ‘unfinished agenda’ of the United Nations, Sharif said that the people of Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK) were "lucky as they enjoy full freedom" and vowed to support people of Kashmir.
Sharif also shot off letters to UN secretary general Ban Ki-moon and UN high commissioner for human rights Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein, urging efforts to end "persistent and egregious violation of basic human rights" of the Kashmiri people and also to implement UN Security Council resolutions.
Sharif chaired a preparatory meeting for the upcoming UN General Assembly (UNGA) attended by his foreign affairs advisor Sartaj Aziz, special assistant on foreign affairs Tariq Fatemi, foreign secretary Aizaz Ahmed Chaudhry, Pakistan's permanent representative in the UN Maleeha Lodhi, and Pakistan's ambassador to the US Jalil Abbas Jilani and other senior officials.
The meeting reviewed the agendas to be included in the next session of UN General Assembly in which the premier is expected to participate, said a statement from his office.
"It is an obligation for me as prime minister of Pakistan to become the voice of Kashmiris who have been oppressed in Kashmir. I will leave no stone unturned to make the world understand the plight and the legitimate struggle of the people of Kashmir," said Sharif.
The meeting observed that "Kashmir remains an unfinished agenda+ of the UN and accordingly India must realise that Kashmir is not its internal matter, rather it is a matter of regional and international concern".
Sharif said that the denial of right of self-determination for Kashmiris is one of the persistent failures of the UN.
"The right of self-determination is the basic right of Kashmiris and we will make every effort to make Kashmiris a captain of their own ship," the statement quoted Sharif as saying in the meeting.
Last week, Sharif had said Kashmir was witnessing a "new wave of freedom movement" and asked his country's diplomats to apprise the world that Kashmir was "not an internal matter of India".
(With inputs from PTI)