July 4, 2017. “Kashmir is a large, resourceful, cultured and multicultural nation. It needs no Indian interference. It fulfills all the parameters of a viable sovereign state as per United Nations charter. To deny that right of sovereignty to millions of people of Kashmir is a travesty of justice. It violates the letter and intent of the UN charter. By refusing to implement the UN Security Council resolutions, India violates its international obligation. These resolutions demand cessation of the military actions, demilitarization and allowing the people of Kashmir to decide their future through an unfettered referendum, or plebiscite under UN supervision” said Dr. Ghulam N. Mir, President, World Kashmir Awareness Forum during 55th Annual Convention of the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA). The ISNA Conventions is the past were attended by international dignitaries like President Jimmy Carter and President Khatami of Iran. (The full text of Dr. Mir’s speech is attached towards the end of this press release.)
Dr. Mir added that Indian occupation of Kashmir is by far the most consequential political blunder the Indian government has made. India never anticipated its catastrophic consequences. And to this day they seem to be blind to the outcome of the terrible tragedy of their making. A wanton blunder so monumental, that it has led to three major wars. And there is more than a fair chance a much more devastating war in future will follow. Only, the next time around, it may not be a conventional war but a nuclear holocaust, a war of mutual annihilation, a war of mutually assured destruction.
“So, what are the Kashmiris under occupation thinking? What do they want? What would they settle for by way of a solution to their future? All you have to do is to read the news stories from Kashmir. Read New York Times, BBC News and Guardian, just to name a few. You will get an idea. 70 years on, Indian is nowhere close to silencing the voices and screams for freedom. It is not even close. Kashmiris have no choice but to hang tough, keep making the sacrifices, keep hope for the best solution to emerge. There is no military solution to Kashmir issue. Indian forces have to leave; Kashmir has to be united to make it whole again. Peace cannot come until Kashmir is demilitarized and a plebiscite held under UN supervision,” Dr. Mir explained.
Professor (Dr.) Imtiaz Khan, President, Kashmiri American Council described the historical facts about Kashmir. The people of Kashmir, he said were promised by both India and Pakistan with the firm support of the world powers to be given the right of self-determination so as to allow them to choose whether they want to go to India, or Pakistan or remain independent. These international agreements were never fulfilled until today.
Dr. Khan enumerated the prevailing draconian laws, like Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) which has given the total impunity to the Indian army in Kashmir. An Indian soldier can shoot to kill at will and he will not be accountable to any body or any agency for any prosecution. Khan added that the Hurriyat leaders have always impressed upon the people of Kashmir to express their dissent in a peaceful manner. The presence of millions of people on the streets of Kashmir cannot be termed as extremists or terrorist. The massive peaceful demonstration has been reflection of the indigenous nature of the Kashmiri resistance movement.
“The world powers need to intervene in setting a stage for the resolution of Kashmir before the two nuclear states of India and Pakistan indulge in full fledged war which will be a monumental disaster that will engulf not only the region but large part of the world,” Dr. Khan concluded.
Dr. Ghulam Nabi Fai, Secretary General of the World Kashmir Awareness Forum and Emcee of the event said that Kashmir dispute was one of the oldest issues pending on the agenda of the United Nations Security Council. Its occupation by India has been left undisturbed by the international community, even though its validity has never been accepted. At no stage, however, have the people of Jammu and Kashmir shown themselves to be reconciled to India’s occupation. There is only one way of just and honorable peace, Fai added, the way chalked out in the international agreements that the future will be decided by the people of Kashmir. Only the exertion of the necessary moral pressure by the world powers, particular the United States will lead the parties to that way.
Dr. M. A. Dhar showed a short video about the atrocities being committed by the Indian army on the civilian population of Kashmir. He said every day, unspeakable atrocities occur at the hands of India's army of occupation. He emphasized that conceptually, the whole issue of Kashmir is a violation of human rights, non-implementation of U.N. resolutions, the forcible occupation of Kashmir and defiance of international commitments. Dr. Dhar stressed that it is time to mitigate the sufferings of the Kashmiri people, who had been pledged U.N.-sponsored plebiscite, which has been denied to them by India.
Dr. Fai can be reached at: 1-202-607-6435 or firstname.lastname@example.org