Pakistan will stand by Kashmir through thick and thin: PM


–Imran thankful to people for their prayers, vows to keep presenting Kashmir case at every forum

–Warns people against pessimism as the ‘Kashmiris are looking towards Pakistan for support’

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan on Sunday declared that the entire Pakistani nation would keep struggling for the just rights of oppressed eight million Kashmiris — who have been bracing the worst kind of curfew and atrocities in Indian Occupied Kashmir (IOK) — even if the world stopped supporting their cause.

The prime minister made these remarks upon his arrival at Islamabad International Airport after his participation at the 74th session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) in New York.  

At the airport, the prime minister, who was accompanied by Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi and other members of his delegation, was warmly received by the federal ministers, Sindh Governor Imran Ismail, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) Governor Shah Farman, party leaders and workers.

Carrying banners, placards and flags as welcoming gestures, the people chanted slogans in favour of the premier who had earlier highlighted the Kashmir issue at UNGA, besides addressing other looming issues, including Islamophobia and global warming.

Addressing the crowd after his arrival at the airport, the prime minister said, “Whether the world stands for Kashmiris or not, the whole Pakistani nation will stand for them because raising voice for their rights is a kind of jihad.”

He said that the worst kind of oppression was being unleashed against eight million innocent Kashmiris in the occupied valley who had been put under complete lockdown by the Indian forces.

“I want to tell you that there may be ups and downs in such efforts and there may be good and bad times, but you should not be distressed because the Kashmiris are looking towards you,” he said.

“The Kashmiri women, children, and elders are all looking towards you,” he said, adding that as the ambassador for the Kashmiris, he would continue exposing anti-Muslims steps and designs against Kashmiris by Modi’s “fascist government” at all forums.

He further said that with “such continued support from the Pakistani nation, God willing, the Kashmiris would soon win their freedom from illegal Indian occupation”.

The prime minister also thanked the nation for their prayers in the difficult times in which he had presented the case for Kashmiris before the United Nations (UN). He particularly thanked his wife Bushra Bibi for her prayers.

He said that he had been reminding all the people who had worked with him for the past many decades about the continuity in making efforts for a cause, which would ultimately be rewarded by God.

Earlier, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf’s (PTI) Chief Organiser Saifullah Khan Niazi asked the party workers on Twitter to reach the Islamabad airport in time to accord the premier with an unprecedented welcome.

Senior party leader Jahangir Khan Tareen also urged the party workers to attend the reception of the prime minister, who he said had “fought the Kashmiri cause like a true hero”.

“Let’s celebrate this win by giving him a hero’s welcome tomorrow 5pm at the New Islamabad Airport. Don’t forget to be there,” he tweeted using hashtag #WelcomeHomePMIK which had been trending on the micro-blogging site.

PM Imran had departed Jeddah, Saudi Arabia for Pakistan earlier in the day after a brief stay there. 

The prime minister had gone to Jeddah from New York after spending a week at the UN, holding wide-ranging talks with various heads of the governments and political leaders, including United States President Donald Trump, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, United Kingdom Prime Minister Boris Johnson, New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad, UN secretary general and others on the sidelines of the UNGA session.

He also spoke at various international think tanks and interacted with the global media.

Prior to his departure from the airport in New York, the premier was asked by the media for a message for the people waiting at the airport for him, and he said that it was God who had granted him people’s respect. The premier then left New York on board a commercial flight after his plane developed a technical fault on Friday night.

On September 27, the prime minister delivered a historic speech in the UNGA session, highlighting the Kashmir, Islamphobia, global warming and money laundering.