Masood asks Modi to respond positively to Trump’s mediation offer      

Fawad Maqsood July 27, 2019

ISLAMABAD: Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) President Sardar Masood Khan on Saturday urged Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi to respond positively to the mediation offer made by US President Donald Trump on the Kashmir issue during the recent visit of Prime Minister Imran Khan to the United States.

Addressing a press conference here along with a parliamentary delegation from United Kingdom (UK), Sardar Masood said the Indian prime minister should show flexibility and seriously consider Trump offer to resolve the long-standing dispute between the two neighbouring countries.

It was the right time for both Pakistan and India to find out a political solution of the Kashmir issue as international powers were ready to play their due role for ending grave human rights violations in the area, he added.

The AJK president his gratitude to the European Union (EU) for discussing the last year’s report of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights in the EU’s Parliament Sub-Committee on Human Rights in February this year and recommending its implementation.

He also hailed the office of UN High Commissioner for Human Rights for releasing the follow-up report on the terrible human rights situation in Indian occupied Kashmir despite the Modi administration’s pressure.

The follow-up report once again condemned the atrocities being committed by the Indian forces in Kashmir valley and suppression of the pro-freedom voices of innocent people, which led to their causalities, he added. The report, he said, reiterated that the persecution of Kashmiris, detention of freedom leaders and suspension of internet services should be stopped immediately.

He said it was the first time in the history of US that the Kashmir issue was echoed in the White House and a US president had expressed his desired to play an arbitrary role openly for resolving the decades-old issue.    Former US presidents Bill Clinton and Obama had also raised the Kashmir issue at different forums, he added.

Sardar Masood said Trump’s offer had proved that the Kashmir issue was an issue of international nature instead of a bilateral dispute.

He urged the Indian government to welcome the offer of Donald Trump as the solution of Kashmir issue was only possible through diplomatic and political means.

The AJK president said they were ready to cooperate with India on the issue and demanded the same resolve from the Indian government which, he thought, always avoided the political settlement in the Kashmir.

Richard Corbett, Labour Member of European Parliament and Co-chairperson of Friends of Kashmir in European Parliament, said the delegation was here to learn and observe the situation on ground so that the European people could be sensitized about the problems of Kashmiris. “Kashmiris are in pain and getting attention across the world,” he said.

Richard said 28 countries were working together in the EU Parliament and discussed their foreign policies there as well. The EU members could play a great role to resolve the issue by leveraging trade agreements with Pakistan and India.

Other members of the UK delegation also expressed their resolve to raise the Kashmir issue at appropriate forums so that a political solution could be made possible at earliest.

Copyright APP (Associated Press of Pakistan), 2019

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