Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) President Barrister Sultan Mahmood Chaudhry, while terming the Kashmir dispute as one of the oldest disputes pending on the United Nations (UN) agenda, said on Friday that it was high time that the UN and the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) must come forward to support Kashmiris’ right to self-determination.
The president expressed these views while addressing a special meeting of the Foreign Ministers of the OIC at the UN on Friday.
Speaking on the occasion, while referring to India's traditional intransigence, he said that India's perpetual denial to grant the right to self-determination to the people of Jammu and Kashmir was the main reason that the issue continues to linger for the past 75 years.
He also said that it was long overdue that the UN should come forward in a big way and influence the government of India to implement the UN Security Council (UNSC) resolutions that guarantee the right of self-determination to the people of Kashmir.
Referring to the worsening human rights situation in the Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IIOJK), the president pointed out that in addition to police and paramilitary forces the Indian government had deployed over a half million armed forces in Kashmir to quell the Kashmiris' legitimate political struggle for their right to self-determination.
He said that the massive troops' concentration in the region was one of the main causes of human rights violations in the disputed territory.
Since August 5, 2019, he added, the deployment of additional forces had further worsened the human rights situation in Kashmir.
Citing the Modi government's political and administrative machinations in Kashmir, Chaudhry said that in the aftermath of 2019, the Indian government had intensified its efforts to change the region's demography to convert the Muslim-majority state into a minority.
He said that changing the region's electoral map through reorganisation of constituencies was a deep-rooted conspiracy to bring a Hindu chief minister in the state.
He, however, maintained that India's policy of oppression and suppression could not dampen the Kashmiris' spirit and their passion for freedom.
The AJK president made a passionate appeal to the international community, in particular the UN and OIC, to play their much-needed role to resolve the Kashmir issue to mitigate the unending sufferings of Kashmiris who have been reeling under India's belligerent military occupation.
He said that it was high time that the UN and OIC must openly support the Kashmiris' right to self-determination and use their influence on India to resolve the Kashmir issue and stop the ongoing violation of human rights in occupied Kashmir.