Altering territory of IOJK, a grave violation of international law: Masood Khan
Sardar Masood Khan, President Azad Jammu and Kashmir, has said that the unilateral and unlawful steps taken by the Indian government to bifurcate and now colonize the Indian Occupied Jammu and Kashmir is an illegal and flagrant violation of international law. He said that the people in IOJK are facing repression, the likes of which have not been witnessed before.
Sardar Masood Khan, President Azad Kashmir made these remarks here at Muzaffarabad while speaking to 33 foreign diplomats from Asia, Europe and Africa undergoing the 28th Foreign Diplomatic Course at the Foreign Service Academy.
Welcoming the foreign diplomats to the Azad Kashmir capital, the President said that Azad Kashmir is a developing economy where we are focusing on self-sufficiency by shifting our dependence from the public sector to the private sector. Unlike IOJK, he said, we have opened up AJK for investors from all over the world.
The President said that the AJK government has three priorities: intensifying diplomatic and political efforts for the resolution of the Jammu and Kashmir dispute, promotion of good governance and fast-paced economic development in the Azad territory. He added that Azad Kashmir has the highest educational score in the whole of Pakistan, a district-wide survey has suggested, and it has the lowest crime rate.
Speaking on the current situation in IOJK, the President said that after the August 5 occupational lock down the number of Indian troops has been beefed up to 900,000. The UN SC has declared the whole State as a disputed territory but India is manoeuvring to permanently change this status. He said that the people of IOJK have vowed not to give up their struggle for their freedom and over the years 500,000 Kashmiris have been mercilessly killed by the Indian occupation forces.
Responding to a question from the participants, the President said that nations raise their armed forces to defend their territorial boundaries and strategic interests. He said that war between Pakistan and India is a possibility but we must realise that any confrontation could lead to the use of nuclear weapons. Even a small scale nuclear exchange would be devastating for not only the people of this region but the whole world is at risk of being affected.
Right now, said the President, the peaceful resolution of the Kashmiri dispute is possible through diplomatic means and the implementation of the existing UN SC resolutions on Kashmir. “It is the responsibly of diplomats like you, the world community and the UN to intervene to peacefully resolve the issue of Jammu and Kashmir and save the world from devastation”, he asserted