ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on Wednesday said that peace between India and Pakistan cannot be finally achieved without a resolution to the Kashmir dispute.
He said that Pakistan wants peace with India. “we have gone the extra mile to achieve this, repeatedly offering a dialogue to address all outstanding issues”, he said while addressing the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA).
He demanded an independent inquiry into the extrajudicial killings in Kashmir and an end to the curfew.
Nawaz Sharif said that over a hundred Kashmiris have been killed, hundreds, including children and infants, blinded by shotgun pellets and over six thousand unarmed civilians injured over the past two months.
He said that Pakistan will share dossier with UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon on Indian brutalities in Kashmir.
The premier demanded a UN fact-finding mission to Kashmir to take stock of extra-judicial killings.
He also called for a UN-backed plebiscite, also demands for the demilitarisation of Jammu and Kashmir.
Nawaz Sharif said that Pakistan wants dialogue with India to resolve the Kashmir dispute.
However, Pakistan premier also said, “India posed unacceptable preconditions to engage in dialogue. Talks are no favour to Pakistan, they are in the interest of both countries. They are essential to resolve our differences”.
“We are open to discussing all measures of restraint and responsibility with India, in any forum or format and without any conditions,” Nawaz said.
He said that a new generation of Kashmiris has risen spontaneously against India’s illegal occupation – demanding freedom from occupation.
“Burhan Wani, the young leader murdered by Indian forces, has emerged as the symbol of the latest Kashmiri Intifada, a popular and peaceful freedom movement, led by Kashmiris, young and old, men and women, armed only with an undying faith in the legitimacy of their cause, and a hunger for freedom in their hearts”, he added
Nawaz Sharif said that Pakistan will not allow externally sponsored terrorism and threats of destabilisation to cause turbulence in the country.
He said that Pakistan is not interested in an arms race with India.
However, he also said, “Pakistan could not ignore India’s unprecedented arms build-up and would take whatever measures are necessary to maintain credible deterrence”
He said that Pakistan’s Zarb-e-Azb Operation is the largest, most robust and most successful anti-terrorism campaign anywhere in the world, deploying 200,000 of our security forces.
“Our comprehensive National Action Plan has the complete endorsement of our people and our Parliament as well as our security forces, all of whom have made heroic sacrifices to defeat terrorism” he added.
Nawaz Sharif said that after 15 years of the current war in Afghanistan, the international community agrees that the only road to a lasting peace in that country is through a dialogue between the government in Kabul and the Afghan Taliban.
“Pakistan has long proposed this as the most viable course to end decades of conflict and suffering in Afghanistan” he added.
He said that Progress will be assured only when the Afghan parties themselves conclude that there is no military solution to the Afghan war, and work assiduously, through a meaningful dialogue process, for achieving reconciliation and peace at home.
Earlier today, Chinese premier Li Keqiang also met with Nawaz Sharif on the sidelines of the UNGA.
The premier hoped that there will be a better understanding of Pakistan’s position on Kashmir by the international community.
He added that China attached great importance to Pakistan’s position on Kashmir.
PM Nawaz also held formal talks with Turkish President Recep Tayyib Erdogan and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo on Tuesday
PM informally met several leaders at UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s luncheon for the visiting dignitaries.
He also interacted with some leaders in the General Assembly hall when he participated in the opening session of the General Debate.