Peace process and killing in Kashmir cannot go together: Fai

LONDON , June 13, 2011. Dr.·Ghulam Nabi·Fai, Executive Director, Kashmiri American Council·Kashmir·Center ·warned that India - Pakistan peace parley and the killing of innocent Kashmiris cannot go together and urged the international community to take cognizance of the·human rights situation·inJammu·& Kashmir while urging·India·and Pakistan to seek an amicable settlement of the disputed land. Speaking at a news conference in London, England , Fai strongly pleaded for the intra-Kashmir dialogue and that Kashmiri leadership must be part of India-Pakistan peace process in discussion on Kashmir.

Fai was on a short visit to London from Geneva where he has been attending the 17th session of the UN·Human Rights Council.

Fai said that an intra-Kashmiri dialogue, representing All Parties Hurriyet Conference and the leadership of all the regions and religions with in the State of·Jammu·&·Kashmir·must take place. The Governments of India and Pakistan need to be persuaded to issue the travel documents to the concerned parties to guarantee their participation. Fai said that Ms.·Arundhati Roy, an internationally known humanitarian justified the involvement of Kashmiris by writing in, “Listening to Grasshoppers” p. 164, “·To anybody who cared to ask, or, more importantly, to listen, it was always clear that even in their darkest moments, people in Kashmir had kept the fires burning and that it was not peace alone they yearned for, but freedom too.”

“India’s claim that Kashmir is·Indian territory·is based on nothing more than an Instrument of Accession signed by the Maharajah (Ruler) in order to obtain India ’s military help against a popular insurgency. This accession was conditional on a reference to a popular vote (Not yet held) under impartial auspices. The Indian claim is rejected by the people of Kashmir . It has never been accepted by the United Nations, never legally validated,” Fai added.

Fai explained that there are only two likely possibilities. Either ascertaining the wishes of the people about their future and acting accordingly or the continuance of the status quo with violent repression and carnage in Kashmir and chronic conflict and the danger of·nuclear war·in the subcontinent of South Asia. Dr. Fai also quoted an imminent Indian scholar, Professor Angana Chatterji who wrote that ‘It is high time to formally recognize the right of Kashmiris to determine their future. The negligence, indifference and callousness that have delayed the resolution of Kashmir continue to have serious repercussions on the day-to-day lives of Kashmiris.’

“The immediate necessity is the intervention of the world powers to bring the violence in Kashmir to a quick end and initiate a political dialogue between the genuine leadership of the people of Jammu & Kashmir and the Governments of India & Pakistan to set a stage for a democratic and peaceful solution” Fai added.

Fai reiterated that an appointment of a person of an international standing like Bishop·Desmond Tutu·as a special envoy on Kashmir will hasten the process of peace and stability in the region of South Asia which includes, India , Pakistan ,Afghanistan·& Kashmir - home to one-fifth of total human race.

Mr. Nazir Ahmed Qureshi, Vice President, World·Kashmir Freedom Movementalso spoke on the occasion and highlighted various aspects of Kashmir issue. He said that the suffering and carnage in occupied Kashmir is a challenge to the conscience of the international community. He added that the people of Kashmir demand what has been pledged to them by the United Nations at the·Security Council, i.e. right of self-determination to decide the future of their land.Mr. Qureishi reminded the British Government of the pledge made by Prime Minister Atlee in 1948 that any contentious issue regarding Kashmir must be submitted to the arbitration.·Mr.·Muhammad Ghalib, President, Tehreek-e-Kashmir UK said·Kashmiri peoplereject the notion that the Kashmir conflict is merely a territorial and bilateral issue between India and Pakistan . The people of Kashmir must be acknowledged as the primary party to the dispute. The human dimension of the conflict should be of major importance to the world at large.Ghalib said that the recent report issued by the Amnesty International has exposed the hellish situation in Kashmir due to the presence of over 700,000 Indian military and paramilitary forces which is the largest army concentration anywhere in the world.

Mr. Mohammad Sharief of Tehreek-e-Kashmir thanked the media fraternity for their partiipation.

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