Qureshi phones UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres


ISLAMABAD, MAY 22 / DNA / = Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi had a telephonic conversation with UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres today to update him on the deteriorating situation in Indian occupied Jammu & Kashmir (IOJ&K).

At the outset, the Secretary General expressed his deep condolences on the crash of PIA 8303 flight and tragic loss of life. The Foreign Minister thanked for the condolences and added that the situation was evolving with respect to possible casualties.

With regard to the situation in IOJ&K, he conveyed Pakistan’s deep concerns over the grave violations of human rights and intensified military crack-down and moves to change the demographic structure of the occupied territory. In this regard, the Foreign Minister alluded to the recent domicile law in IOJ&K, which was in violation of relevant UN Security Council resolutions and international law, including the 4th Geneva Convention.

The Foreign Minister deplored that in the garb of COVID-19 crisis, India was imposing even more stringent lockdown in the occupied territory and further brutalizing the Kashmiri population through fake “encounters” and phony cordon-and-search operations, extrajudicial killings, and other repressive measures.

The Foreign Minister underlined that in order to divert the world’s attention from its internal problems, continued repression by occupation forces in IOJ&K, rising tide of hatred, racism and Islamophobia against Muslim minority, India may resort to some “false flag” operation and undertake another misadventure. Pakistan had been fore-warning the world community in this regard, and would respond effectively to thwart any such ill-considered move.

The Foreign Minister reiterated that Pakistan remained ready to allow UNMOGIP to authenticate the claim regarding the so-called “launch pads,” if India were to provide any specific information. The Indian allegations were primarily meant to defame the indigenous Kashmir resistance, which was a direct consequence of India’s oppression and brutalization of Kashmiris.

The belligerent statements of the Indian political and military establishment were posing threats to peace and security in the region, the Foreign Minister added.

Apprising the Secretary-General of intensification of ceasefire violations by India along the Line of Control (LoC), the Foreign Minister stressed the important role of UNMOGIP in fully reporting all ceasefire violations.

While highlighting his recent communication to the UN Security Council regarding IOJ&K, the Foreign Minister stressed that the United Nations as well as the Security Council should play their due role in preventing the situation from further escalating and stopping India from its illegal actions and preserving peace and security in South Asia. He also conveyed his concern on the ongoing demonization of Muslims in India in the context of Covid-19.

Secretary General Guterres thanked the Foreign Minister for this timely update and comprehensive briefing regarding the situation in IOJ&K. He underlined that he was closely monitoring the situation and would play his part in taking up these matters.

Referring to Prime Minister Imran Khan’s “Global Initiative on Debt Relief,” for developing countries, Foreign Minister Qureshi underscored that debt relief was essentially a tool to help revive global economy. The Prime Minister in a virtual address to the WEF’s Covid Action Platform had outlined Pakistan’s perspective in this regard. He informed him of Pakistan’s support to Secretary General’s efforts in addressing the long-term financing challenges faced by the developing countries.

The Secretary General informed the Foreign Minister that, together with Canada and Jamaica, his office was organizing a high-level virtual event focused on FfD (Financing for Development) next week. He expressed the hope that Pakistan could participate at the level of the Prime Minister in the event. The Foreign Minister thanked for the invitation.