Afridi urges int’l community to help end humanitarian crisis in Kashmir


Says peace in Asia linked with resolution of Kashmir dispute, commercial interests shouldn’’t have precedence over human rights abuses

ISLAMABAD: Federal Minister for States and Frontier Regions & Narcotics Control Shehryar Khan Afridi on Tuesday said that peace in Asia is intertwined with the peaceful resolution of Kashmir dispute and the members of the parliaments of Europe, United Kingdom (UK) and the United States (US) need to act to help the people of Indian Occupied Kashmir (IOK).

Addressing a delegation of parliamentarians at a seminar hosted by Young Professionals, the minister said that the western world needs to act above commercial and political interests.

“Who can understand the importance of peace and human rights better than you as Europe was the first to accept migrants from across the globe. There was a time when might was right and was the order of the day. But now you are leading the world and it is time for you to act and intervene to save those suffering in IOK,” the minister said.

He said that in the past, Muslims used to be moderate and missionary schools were allowed to work in northern parts of what is today Pakistan. “I along with millions of Pakistanis got education from these missionary schools. Today, we are knocking at doors of the western countries as IOK is bleeding but to no avail. The region has witnessed so much bloodshed and oppression over the past seven decades but the world is silent due to certain economic and political interests linked with India,” he added. He further said that peace in Asia is interlinked with Kashmir resolution.

Afridi argued that perhaps political and commercial interests have overtaken the world powers because they are shying away from playing their due role in this conflict and to bring peace in South Asia. “If due attention is not paid to the humanitarian crisis in India, I fear that global peace may get affected,” he said.

“There are no differences among the Asians living in Europe, but the deep state in India keeps Kashmir bleeding and minorities are being lynched with impunity,” he added.

Afridi said that Pakistan is a gateway to central Asia which has 70 per cent of world resources. “It is unfortunate to note that those nations who focus on even animals rights are silent over the genocide of Muslims in India and especially the Kashmiri people are the target of state oppression. Market interest should not overtake humanitarian values and the west needs to play their role to protect the rights of Kashmiris,” he said.

“Almost every family in the Kashmir has lost its members and there is no access to IOK for world observers as Indians are not even allowing the UN monitors to go and assess the situation there,” he added.

He said that today Pakistan is fighting the cause of humanity as it is leading the biggest war against terrorism on land. “We have been hosting four million Afghan refugees for the past four decades. The world needs to get out of its slumber and move to help those suffering in Kashmir before it is too late,” he concluded.