Indian SC’s decision on status of Kashmir holds no validity: FM Jillani

ISLAMABAD: Caretaker Foreign Minister Jalil Abbas Jilani said on Monday that India has no right to take any unilateral action on the status of occupied Kashmir, strongly rejecting the decision taken by its supreme court as invalid.

The foreign minister’s remarks came hours after the Supreme Court of India upheld the Modi government’s 2019 annexation of the disputed territory.

The unanimous verdict was handed down by a panel of five judges, on over a dozen petitions challenging the revocation and a subsequent decision to split the region into two federally administered territories – Jammu and Kashmir, and the Buddhist territory of Ladakh.

Jillani said that Jammu and Kashmir was a global conflict, and that there were UN resolutions present on the matter.

“Indian actions on August 5, 2019 were illegal and in violation of UN resolutions,” he said, adding that the people of Kashmir had already rejected unilateral actions.

“The decision of the Indian Supreme Court cannot divert the attention of the world from the ongoing Indian atrocities in Kashmir,” Jillani asserted.

Reiterating that Indian actions were a violation of international law, the foreign minister added that its actions were an attempt at committing genocide of the Kashmiris and turning them into a minority in their own land.

The foreign minister maintained that the issue will be raised before all stakeholders as Islamabad has already shed light on New Delhi’s unilateral actions.

Jillani added that all international forums, including the United Nations, the European Union and OIC are aware of Indian’s unilateral actions of August 5, 2019.

Maintaining that the issue of occupied Kashmir has been on the UN’s agenda for decades, he reiterated the government’s demand that all UN resolutions on the disputed region should be followed to resolve the Kashmir issue.

Elaborating further, he said Islamabad will consider all options following the Indian SC’s decision, and added that the country’s apex court had also passed a biased verdict in the Babri Masjid demolition case. “Today’s decision is also of the same nature.”

Jillani said since the abrogation of Article 370, those living in occupied Kashmir have suffered under numerous restrictions, and serious violations of human rights by New Delhi’s forces continue in IIOJK.

He reminded that India had also denied permission to independent observers from the OIC to visit the disputed region.

‘India’s plans to annex IIOJK to fail’

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MoFA) also categorically rejected the judgment announced by the Indian Supreme Court on the status of Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IIOJK).

The ministry maintained that Jammu and Kashmir is an internationally-recognised dispute, one that has remained on the agenda of the UN Security Council for over seven decades.

“The final disposition of Jammu and Kashmir is to be made in accordance with the relevant United Nations Security Council Resolutions and as per aspirations of the Kashmiri people. India has no right to make unilateral decisions on the status of this disputed territory against the will of the Kashmiri people and Pakistan,” the foreign ministry maintained.

The MoFA added that “Pakistan does not acknowledge the supremacy of the Indian Constitution over Jammu and Kashmir. Any process, subservient to the Indian Constitution, carries no legal significance”.

The ministry maintained that India had no right to abdicate its international obligations on the pretext of domestic legislations and judicial verdicts. “Its plans to annex IIOJK are bound to fail,” the ministry further stated.

The judicial endorsement of India’s unilateral and illegal actions of 5 August 2019 is a travesty of justice, based on distorted historical and legal arguments, observed the FO.

Furthermore, the ministry added that the Indian Supreme Court’s verdict failed to acknowledge the internationally-recognised disputed nature of the Jammu and Kashmir region. “It further fails to cater to the aspirations of the Kashmiri people, who have already rejected India’s illegal and unilateral actions of 5 August 2019. The judgment is yet another manifestation of the pliant judiciary under India’s ruling dispensation.”

“Restoration of statehood, conduct of State Assembly elections or similar steps cannot serve as a substitute to the grant of the right to self-determination to the Kashmiri people.

“The judgment cannot distract the international community’s attention from the gross and systematic human rights violations being perpetrated in IIOJK,” Pakistan maintained.

India’s unilateral and illegal measures since August 5, 2019 have been aimed at changing the demographic structure and political landscape of the IIOJK, in flagrant violation of international law and the relevant UN Security Council Resolutions, especially Resolution 122 (1957).

The FO maintained that India’s unilateral decisions remained a matter of grave concern for Pakistan “as their ultimate goal is to convert the Kashmiris into a disempowered community in their own land. These measures must be rescinded to create an environment for peace and dialogue”.

Pakistan will continue to extend its full political, diplomatic and moral support to the people of IIOJK for the realization of their inalienable right to self-determination, the MoFA concluded.

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