Speakers in Oslo seminar urge for international pressure on India concerning Kashmir issue

Speakers at a seminar in Oslo, the capital of Norway have urged the international community to pressurize India for giving the right to self-determination to the oppressed people of Jammu and Kashmir.

The seminar attended by a number of scholars and intellectuals from Norway was organized by Peace Research Institute Oslo (PRIO) this week.

Chairman Pakistan’s senate committee for foreign affairs Senator Mushahid Hussain Sayyed, South Asian Strategic Stability Institute (SASSI)’s Chairperson Dr. Maria Sultan were main guest speakers of the seminar moderated by Director PRIO Kristian Berg Harpviken. Ms. Kaja Borchgrevink, the Senior Researcher of PRIO and Former Member Norwegian parliament Khalid Mahmood also joint the debate member of the panel set after the speeches of the main guests. Comments and questions were also raised by three important figures former Prime Minister of Norway Kjell Magne Bondevik, Executive Director Kashmir Scandinavian Council Sardar Ali Shahnawaz Khan and Member Norway’s parliament Peter Eide.

In his address, senator Mushahid Hussain Sayyed said, Kashmir is an internationally recognized issue and thousands of Kashmiris sacrificed their lives for the right to self-determination. The oppressed Kashmiris are raising their voices for a long time. He added Pakistan wants peace in South Asia and resolution of Kashmir issue in accordance with the wishes of the people of Jammu and Kashmir is essential for peace in the region.

Senator Mushahid further pointed out, South Asia is an emerging economic region but a dream for the prosperity of this region can not be fulfilled without peaceful resolution of the Kashmir issue. Kashmir’s problem is related to the political fate of millions of the Kashmiri people.

He said, Norway has an important role in peace in different parts of the world and we wish a dialogue on Kashmir should also be started from Norway. The International community should also play its role in a peaceful solution to the Kashmir issue.

Another guest speaker from Pakistan Dr. Maria Sultan said, occupied Jammu and Kashmir has been witnessing worse situations for the last five months as India has annulled the special status of the region and imposed a curfew on the oppressed people of Kashmir. She further said, by introducing a new bill of Indian citizenship, the Modi government has also created a problem for the whole country as the people from different walks of life came out for a protest on this controversial act. In her speech, Dr. Maria highlighted the current situation in occupied Kashmir in light of historical facts about the Kashmir problem.

Earlier to guest speakers, moderating the seminar director PRIO Kristian Berg Harpviken introduced the main speakers and panel for debate in the second session of the seminar. Mrs. Kaja Borchgrevink, the Senior Researcher of Peace Research Institute Oslo (PRIO) said, Kashmir issue is not a territorial or bilateral issue while it is more than this.

Former member Norway’s parliament Khalid Mahmood said it is the issue of the political fate of the Kashmiri people who are struggling for the right to self-determination for a long time.

Giving his remarks on Kashmir’s situation, former Norwegian prime minister Kjell Magne Bondevik, who already visited both parts of Indian occupied Kashmir and Azad Kashmir has said, the international community should play its role for resolution of Kashmir issue and as well pressurize India to stop human rights violation in Kashmir.

While commenting during the second session of the seminar, Executive Director Kashmir Scandinavian Council Sardar Ali Shahnawaz Khan suggested that Pakistan should take up the Kashmir dispute to an intentional court of justice (ICJ), as UN Security Council’s resolutions clearly state that if the matter is not solved then it will be sent to the ICJ. Referring to recent statements of Chief of Defense Staff of India and the Director General Police of Indian occupied Jammu and Kashmir concerning possibility formation of ‘deradicalization camps’ for young Kashmiri boys and girls, Ali Shahnawaz said, this is tantamount to walking on the Hitler’s path, these centers will serve as concentration camps and the motive behind is to break the will of the people of Jammu and Kashmir. Ali Shahnawaz Khan, who represents All Parties Hurriyat Conference (APHC) asked for a collective international response against what India intends to do in Jammu and Kashmir?

Member of Norwegian parliament Peter Eide from SV party, who already raised the question of the severe situation of Kashmir in the parliament has also asked what we can do further to highlight the issue human rights violations in Indian administered Kashmir and what we can do in the context of efforts for peaceful resolution of the Kashmir issue.
Giving remarks after the seminar Pakistani researcher Syed Sibtain Shah, who is familiar with Norwegian Affairs said, this seminar organized by an important Norway’s think tank, will give positive results on Kashmir issue.

Senator Mushahid Hussain Syed and Dr. Maria Sultan also addressed a gathering in Pakistan’s embassy where they were welcomed by Pakistan’s Ambassador Zaheer Parvez Khan, Deputy Head of Mission Zeb Tayyab Abbasi and Community Welfare Attache Khalid Mahmood. Addressing the prominent figures of the Norwegian Pakistani community, the distinguished guests said, the seminar held at PRIO will give results for further highlighting the Kashmir issue. We hope Norway will play its role in preventing human rights violations and for a peaceful resolution of the Kashmir issue. Additionally, talking to media persons, they further said, dialogue on Kashmir should be started from Norway.