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UNITED NATIONS: Pakistan's Ambassador to the UN, Munir Akram, has dismissed India's claim that Jammu and Kashmir was its integral part, and said that talks with India would be fruitful once India reverses its nearly two-year-old "illegal" action to end the special status of the disputed territory.

"Jammu and Kashmir is a UN-recognized disputed territory and NOT an 'integral part of India'," Ambassador Akram said in a sharp rejoinder to his Indian counterpart, T S Tirumurti, who while claiming that Jammu and Kashmir was an "integral and inalienable" part of India, said his government was prepared to discuss with Pakistan any issues and resolve them bilaterally and peacefully as provided under the 1972 Simla agreement.

The Indian envoy made that statement in reply to questions at a press briefing he addressed Monday in his capacity as President of the UN Security Council to outline the 15-member Council's programme of work for the month of August.

Within hours, the Pakistani envoy issued his response, asserting that Security Council resolutions calling for a plebiscite remain in force and can be abrogated only by the body itself.

Ambassador Akram also said that India's unilateral and illegal actions of 5th August 2019 to annex Jammu and Kashmir violated two Security Council resolutions, and "are thus null and void".

At his press briefing, the Indian envoy had justified that action as the prerogative of Indian Parliament.

As regards dialogue with India, the Pakistani envoy said it would be productive once New Delhi reverses all unilateral and illegal measures imposed on and after 5 August 2019; Rescinds the demographic changes initiated in Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IIOJK); and halts its oppression and human rights violations there.

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