IOK has turned into one of most heavily militarised regions in the world: Fawad

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ISLAMABAD: Minister for Information and Broadcasting Fawad Chaudhry on Tuesday said that with one army soldier deployed for 10 Kashmiris, the Indian Occupied Kashmir (IOK) has turned into one of the most heavily militarised regions in the world.

Addressing a Kashmir Solidarity Day seminar at the President House, the minister said that India militarised the occupied territory to suppress the indigenous freedom movement of Kashmiris, who just demanded their legitimate right of self-determination.

He said that increased deployment and militarisation served nothing but created hate, adding that even the local Kashmiri leadership like Mehbooba Mufti and Umer Abdullah, who were not supporting the point of view of Pakistan and Kashmiris, had now admitted that the movement could not be suppressed.

The minister said, “In 1947, India occupied Kashmir but after seven decades, Kashmir has occupied the Indian narrative.”

He said that massive human rights violations had exposed the real face of India, who claimed to be the so-called champion of democracy in the world. “When you will use force and rapes against unarmed civilians as a weapon, you are no more democracy and a civilised nation,” he said.

Pakistan’s civil and military leadership wants normalisation of ties with India but it is not possible without resolving the core issue of Kashmir as per wishes of its people, he added.

“It is not possible for Pakistan to ignore atrocities being committed in occupied Kashmir by the subjugating forces,” he added.

He said that Pakistani leadership desired to move towards the normalisation process with an open heart, adding that India should see Kashmir as an issue of humanity and not a matter of territory.

The minister said that a basic difference between the two countries (Pakistan and India) was that India considered the Kashmir a territorial issue, while Pakistan always treated it as a matter of humanity.

He said that Pakistan always felt pain and agony of its Kashmiri brethren, adding “When blood bleeds in IOK, our soul feels its pain as we are bound with them in a relation of humanity.”