Muslims’ lives, businesses unsafe in IOK, says Qureshi


–Foreign minister says PM Imran fulfilled his promise of serving as Kashmir’s ambassador

–Hopes European Parliament will play its role in stopping India’s HR violations in IOK

KARACHI: Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi on Sunday said that Indian government’s atrocities in Kashmir and its ‘fascist’ ideology have endangered the lives and businesses of the Muslims in the occupied valley.

Addressing the media in Karachi, the foreign minister said that he wished the Indian government would take responsibility of the Muslims of Kashmir. He added that in Pakistan, the government was responsible for the protection of lives and properties of the minorities, whether they are Hindu, Sikh or Christian.

“We want to assure every community in Pakistan, whether Hindu, Sikh or Christian that protection of your lives and property is the government’s responsibility,” he said, adding that this is the comparative analysis he wants to present before the world.

He said that the people of Indian Occupied Kashmir (IOK) are suffering because of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s “fascist mindset”, which he said was similar to that of 20th century dictators Hitler and Mussolini.

“The Kashmiris have been cut off from the world for almost a month now and people being put through the worst circumstances,” he added.

He said that occupied Kashmir has become a big jail and people in various countries are worried about their loved ones in the occupied valley as there is total blackout of communication network. He added that there is serious shortage of food and medicines and children cannot go to school.

FM Qureshi said that India calls itself the biggest democracy in the world but it has become a country that has gone against the democratic norms and is denying rights to the minorities. “India has also imposed sanctions on media which is not allowed to go into the occupied area to report the truth to the world,” he added.

“We want to give a clear message that this is our belief and want to tell the world that we wish that these principles were also being observed in occupied Kashmir, where the sanctity of our daughters is not safe. Where the businesses of Muslims have been halted for the past 28 days. Where young men are being picked up [by Indian forces] and tortured; where innocent and unarmed people are being targeted for revenge,” he added.

The foreign minister said that Prime Minister Imran Khan has fulfilled his promise of serving as Kashmir’s ambassador as he highlighted the gross human rights violations in the held valley in front of the world. “PM Imran has showed the true face of the India and has presented our point of view to the world in a better way,” he added.

He said that PM Imran will also go to US soon to present this issue before the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) and Pakistan is paving way to get support of the world for the innocent Kashmiris being put to brutal atrocities by India.

The foreign minister expressed hope that the European Parliament will also discuss the matter which is on the agenda for their meeting on Monday and will raise its voice for Kashmiris who are going through the worst crisis.

Replying to a question, he said that Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) has taken a good stance about the Kashmir issue and has demanded to lift the curfew in the occupied valley at once.

Replying to another question about the opposition’s stance over the Kashmir issue, he thanked the opposition for backing up the government for the issue and for the resolutions passed in the parliament. He asked the opposition to also be part of the other initiatives, including solidarity hour, to show the world that Pakistanis are united for the people of Kashmir.