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ISLAMABAD: President Arif Alvi on Wednesday demanded of India to immediately end its "ongoing spree of unending torture, suppression and killings in the Indian Occupied Kashmir (IOK)" and to lift the lockdown and other restrictions imposed in the occupied valley.

Addressing a special session of the Senate convened to mark the first anniversary of the illegal annexation of the IOK with India and to denounce India's oppressive tactics in the IOK, the president said the bloodshed of innocent was stoking fire to further ignite the freedom movement.

"The people of the Occupied Kashmir are fed up with the unending torture and oppression. Their sacrifices will not go in vain. Each and every sacrifice the Kashmiris in the occupied valley nears them to freedom," he said.

The president demanded removal of all kinds of restrictions and blockades in the IOK, and lifting of round-the-clock curfew.

He also demanded that all the detained Kashmiri leadership be released immediately, and rape against women and cruelty against minors be stopped forthwith.

The president appreciated the leadership of Prime Minister Imran Khan, saying after assuming power, the prime minister sought peace with India but his efforts were not reciprocated by New Delhi.

"Pakistan is a peace-loving country. We want peaceful resolution of Kashmir issue in accordance with the United Nations Security Council resolutions and aspirations of the Kashmiri people," he said adding that Pakistan's decision to release the captured Indian Air Force (IAF) pilot after Pulwama attack was part of Pakistan's policy not to escalate tension with India.

"We showed the world that Pakistan's security is invincible. No one can harm Pakistan. At the same time, we showed that we want peace," he added.

Alvi reiterated Pakistan's political, diplomatic and moral support to the Kashmiri people in their just struggle for their right to self-determination.

He denounced the "warmongering attitude of Indian media and their leadership."

On August 5 last year, a new wave of suppression and brutality was unleashed against the innocent Kashmiri people in the IOK, he said.

"The entire occupied valley had been turned into an open jail with deployment of more than 900,000 troops. Cases of martyrdom of innocent Kashmiris and human rights violations increased manifolds after these illegal steps, including revoking of the IOK's special status and enactment of illegal Jammu and Kashmir Regulation Acts," the president said adding that the IOK siege was also taking a toll on the livelihoods of the Kashmiri people with 700,000 Kashmiri youth rendered jobless, and the valley's economy having suffered a massive loss of about $3 billion.

"More than 13,000 Kashmiri youth have been arrested over the last one year. Crimes against humanity have been meted out in the occupied valley against the helpless people of Kashmir including communication blackout and stopping medical supplies as well as access of humanitarian agencies to the territory," the president said.

He said the military siege had rendered hundreds of thousands of Kashmiri youth jobless and inflicted loss of billions of dollars to their economy.

The president said that the illegal action of last year were immoral, and contrary to the international laws including the Geneva Convention.

He said India scrapped the special status of occupied territory to change its demography of Kashmir.

He said the fascist "Hindutva policy" was visible in the IOK.

He demanded of the international community to act for the grant of right to self-determination to the Kashmiris.

"The Indian leadership always stepped back from its promises and agreements, and failed to honour its commitment made with the UNSC to implement its resolutions," Alvi said, adding that India never held talks under the Shimla Agreement of 1973 to discuss the Kashmir issue and stymied all efforts for peaceful resolution of the issue on the pretext of terming it a bilateral issue.

The president read out the UNSC Resolution 47, which provided for holding of an independent plebiscite in accordance with the Kashmiri people's aspirations and retaining the demography in the IOK.

"The heart-wrenching incident of a nephew sitting on the dead body of his grandfather in the IOK, which went viral in the recent past, is more than enough to shake the world's conscience," Alvi said.

The RSS (Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh) and the BJP (Bharatiya Janata Party) manifesto is expressly based on extremist and fascist policies, and directed against the minorities in India, he said.

The brave Kashmiris are facing all those extremist policies but nothing could suppress their spirit for freedom, he added.

Alvi thanked Turkey, China, Iran, Indonesia, Azerbaijan, and other "friendly countries" for strongly supporting the Kashmir issue.

He urged the international media to further highlight the issue.

The United Nations reports, resolutions by the United States congressmen, the European Union Parliament and British parliamentarians showed that the world was taking note of Indian government's illegal and inhuman acts, he added.

"Pakistan will always stand by our Kashmiri brethren and will not leave them alone in their just struggle for liberation from Indian oppression," President Alvi reiterated.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2020

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