FM Qureshi says Pakistan to set plan of action in Kashmir on Aug 17

ISLAMABAD: Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi said a meeting had been called for Saturday (today) to discuss the issue of and situation in occupied Kashmir after the United Nations Security Council concluded its discussions earlier today.

Speaking to media here in the federal capital, Qureshi said various Pakistani institutions would be part of the meeting on Saturday and a future plan of action — in light of today’s historical progress and success — would be set.

As recent as early morning today, Qureshi said, there was information that India was trying to not let the UNSC meeting take place. He, however, added that he congratulated “all our people today for India has been unmasked”.

“The Kashmir issue was discussed at the Security Council for the first time today after five decades,” the minister said, adding that he wished to express his gratitude to the members of the UNSC, who, he noted, were not swayed by India’s efforts and continued their meeting as scheduled.

Qureshi commented on how India had kept the issue of occupied Kashmir hidden from the world and that the UNSC called a meeting 72 hours after Pakistan made its request.

According to the foreign minister, the UN’s military observers and political affairs representatives were called to the meeting on Kashmir, wherein a clear and detailed discussed was held.

India’s case, Qureshi added, was based on two points, one of which is New Delhi’s stance that occupied Kashmir is an internal issue and that that was why the matter should not be taken to the UNSC.

Qureshi further said UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres maintained that the issue of Kashmir could only be resolved in accordance with the UN resolutions.

“It’s clear now that the world is observing the situation in occupied Kashmir,” he said, adding that the global fraternity believed that there were truths to be revealed.

In the meeting, the human rights violations in the Himalayan region were also discussed, he said, adding that the UNSC’s move today proved that the issue was not an internal matter of India.

The foreign minister also spoke of how ground realities in occupied Kashmir would be ascertained after the curfew is lifted and communication resumed.

“We have to stand strong with the Kashmiri people until the end. People expressed solidarity with the Kashmiris world over [and] international media unmasked India’s true face,” he said.

“No Kashmiri supports India’s stance,” Qureshi stressed, adding: “India should observe the situation after removing the curfew and resuming communication in the conflicted region.

Qureshi also noted that Pakistan would continue its diplomatic, moral, and political support for the Kashmiri people. A message has been sent to the world that the “Kashmiri people are not alone”, he added.

“A peaceful resolution is needed for the Kashmir issue,” the minister said, noting, however, that the Indian defence minister’s statement was irresponsible.