‘Hope for Kashmiris’: UNGA adopts Pakistan-sponsored resolution on right to self-determination

Dec 20, 2021 | Kashmir Coverage (General News)

The United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) in New York adopted with consensus on Friday a Pakistan-sponsored resolution, titled ‘Universal Realisation of the Right of the Peoples to Self-Determination’, which “unequivocally supports the right to self-determination for all peoples under subjugation, alien domination and foreign occupation”, including those of Indian-occupied Kashmir. 

According to a statement issued by the Foreign Office (FO), the adoption of the resolution with consensus would provide the people of Indian-occupied Kashmir with hope in their just struggle for self-determination and freedom from oppression and occupation.

Co-sponsored by 72 countries, the resolution secured the support of all UN member states due to its “universal character of the right to self-determination and its continued applicability in situations of foreign occupation and intervention”, the FO said.

“This annual affirmation by the General Assembly serves to preserve the legitimacy of the freedom struggle of peoples under colonial and foreign occupation,” the statement said, adding that the resolution “offers hope that destinies will be decided in accordance with the principles of justice enshrined in the UN Charter, UN resolutions and international law”.

The conflict and unrest in Indian-occupied Kashmir has intensified since Prime Minister Narendra Modi came to power in 2014 and won a landslide re-election in 2019. Modi’s Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party-led government toughened its stance both against Pakistan, as well as, Kashmiri rebels amid rising attacks by Hindu hard-liners against minorities in India, further deepening frustrations among Kashmir’s Muslims.

The valley has been under a security lockdown since the Indian government stripped Kashmiris of the special autonomy they had for seven decades through a rushed presidential order in 2019.

FM Qureshi apprises UNSC of situation in Indian-occupied Kashmir

Earlier this month, Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi apprised the president of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) and UN secretary general of the continuing grave situation in Indian-occupied Kashmir.

In a letter addressed to the president of UNSC and UN secretary general, the foreign minister had pointed to the deteriorating human rights and humanitarian situation in the valley and the persistent threat to international peace and security posed by India’s provocative and irresponsible rhetoric as well as its track record of orchestrating false flag operations.

The foreign minister had drawn attention to the recent spate of extra-judicial killings, arbitrary arrests and illegal detentions in India-occupied Kashmir.

He had also highlighted the recent arrest of renowned Kashmiri human rights activist Khurram Parvez on trumped-up charges, “in complete disregard for basic human rights principles, norms and international law”.

Naveed Siddiqui | Dawn