Pakistan on Monday slammed India’s plans for another “visit” to Indian Occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IOJK) for diplomats based in New Delhi, a statement from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said.
In the statement, Foreign Officer Spokesperson Zahid Hafeez Chaudhri said that this was part of India’s efforts to mislead the world.
Such “guided tours are a smokescreen, aimed at diverting international attention from India’s egregious human rights violations in Kashmir and creating a false impression of normalcy,” he said.
“The visit would mean nothing if there is no access to all the areas and the possibility to freely interact with the Kashmiri people and the civil society in an atmosphere free of intimidation.
Equally, meeting the senior Hurriyat leadership, including those incarcerated on trumped-up charges alone, would enable an objective assessment of the ground realities,” Chaudhri said.
The Indian notion of so-called normalcy in IIOJK has “no feet to stand on” as the world could see that the illegal and inhumane military siege continues for over 18 months now, the spokesperson said.
“Extra-judicial killings of Kashmiris in fake encounters, and staged cordon-and-search operations have become rampant; arbitrary detentions, enforced disappearances and custodial torture have increased; Kashmiri leadership remains incarcerated,” he said.
Speaking further on the human rights violations, he said that journalists, human rights activists, and international human rights organisations are being harassed; and the fundamental rights of Kashmiris, including the right to express themselves, continue to be denied.
Pakistan reiterated the call for India to allow the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), the United Nations Observers, the OIC Independent Permanent Human Rights Commission (IPHRC), and others to visit IIOJK and assess the situation on the ground.
“The international community […] must urge India to take genuine steps to resolve the Jammu and Kashmir dispute in a peaceful manner in accordance with the relevant UN Security Council resolutions and the wishes of the Kashmiri people,” the spokesperson added.