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Pakistan repeats call for result-oriented talks on Kashmir

ASSOCIATED PRESS OF PAKISTAN NEWS SUMMARY (29-10-1999)

UNITED NATIONS, Oct 29 (APP) - Pakistan has reiterated its readiness for a result-oriented dialogue with India to resolve all outstanding disputes with India, particularly core issue of Jammu and Kashmir. "Pakistan, therefore, stands ready to work towards resolving all its outstanding problems, especially the core issue of Jammu and Kashmir, with India through peaceful and result-oriented negotiations," Pakistan's Permanent Representative to UN Inam-ul-Haque said in a statement before third committee of the United Nations General Assembly. He said the unresolved issue of Jammu and Kashmir has been the root cause of tension and conflict in South Asia. "Peace, security and development of the region is intrinsically linked to a peaceful and honorable solution of this problem," he said and added, "it is our belief that Kashmiri people's aspirations for freedom cannot be suppressed or ignored."

He said Pakistan also believes that the free exercise by the Kashmiri peoples of their right to decide their own future would open new vistas of peace and prosperity in the region. The Pakistani diplomat said the hapless people of Jammu and Kashmir have been a major victim of denial of their right to self-determination for more than five decades. He recalled that more than fifty years ago, the UN Security Council had decided that the people of Jammu and Kashmir would determine their own future through the holding of a free and impartial plebiscite under UN auspices. "Both India and Pakistan committed themselves to abide by this decision. India, however, he regretted, resoled from its solemn commitment and to this day has refused to implement the relevant Security Council resolutions, thus denying the Kashmiri people their right to self-determination. While the UN was organizing the free and impartial Popular Consultation Process in East Timor, he said, the Indian Government was enacting an electoral farce in occupied Jammu and Kashmir, with the help of more than 700,000 occupation troops, to perpetuate its illegal and immoral occupation of Kashmir.

Referring to the recently held sham pools in held Kashmir, Ambassador Inam-ul-Haque said the boycott of the farcical elections by Kashmiri people was total, despite dire threats against non-participation by the puppet Chief Minister of the occupied state. "When the people boycotted the elections, notwithstanding the threats and the use of force, the chief Minister placed the entire APHC leadership, which had organized the boycott behind bars." He added: "The overwhelming boycott by Kashmiri people of these so-called elections is the real referendum and a telling condemnation of the illegal Indian occupation of Jammu and Kashmir." He urged International community to influence India to immediately release the APHC leaders who are under the illegal detention.

He regretted Kashmir continues to bleed. "For more than five decades the people of Indian occupied Jammu and Kashmir have continued their struggle for the realization of their inalienable right to self-determination." In the last decade alone, he said, the Indian military campaign to bludgeon Kashmiris into submission has resulted in the murder of more than 65,000 of innocent Kashmiri men, women and children, maiming of hundreds of thousands and incarceration of thousands more. The entire Jammu and Kashmir State, he said, has been converted into a war zone. The Indian occupation forces, he said, which number around 700,000 and constitute the heaviest concentration of troops anywhere in the world, have a free license to kill, rape and pillage without any fear of being held accountable. Extra-judicial killings, arbitrary executions and torture by the occupation forces are all pervasive in Jammu and Kashmir. "These are crimes against humanity. This is state-sponsored terrorism at its worst. And these crimes are being committed to hold millions of people in bondage, denying them the most basic of nights, just to satisfy the occupier's desire for tentorial aggrandizement."

He said the indomitable spirit of the Kashmiri people has withstood Indian onslaught against their youth, against their women, against their children, against their way of life, against their livelihood and against their economy for decades. "They remain steadfast in their demand for a free and impartial plebiscite under the UN auspices to decide their destiny." Under the leadership of APHC, their true representative, he said, their struggle for the realization of their inalienable right to self-determination continues unabated. "The people of Jammu and Kashmir expect justice from the United Nations. They expect the international community to be equitable, non-discriminatory and non-selective in the implementation of Security Council resolutions and to support them staunchly in their jut struggle. They expect the UN to play the same proactive role, as it has done in the case of East Timor, to find a just and honorable solution of their problem on the basis of the relevant Security Council resolutions." Referring to Middle East crisis, the Pakistani representative said the revival of the peace process has given rise to a new optimism. "We are encouraged by the recent signing of the Palestine-Israel agreement for the final status talks. This is a step in the right direction. We are confident the people of Palestine will soon regain all of their territory and achieve their cherished vision of becoming a proud, sovereign and independent member of the comity of nations."