Pakistan calls for UN probe of India actions in Kashmir
GENEVA, Sept 11: Pakistan's foreign minister demanded on Tuesday that the UN launch an international investigation into the situation in Indian Kashmir, warning of the risk of "genocide" in the Muslim-majority region.
"The people of Indian Occupied Jammu and Kashmir are apprehending the worst," Shah Mehmood Qureshi told the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva, adding "I shudder to mention the word genocide here, but I must."
India imposed a military clampdown on Kashmir from August 5 to prevent unrest as New Delhi revoked the disputed region's autonomy. Mobile phone networks and the internet are still cut off in all but a few pockets.
Kashmir, split between India and Pakistan since 1947, has been the spark for two major wars and countless clashes between the two nuclear-armed arch-rivals.
"For the last six weeks, India has transformed Occupied Jammu and Kashmir into the largest prison on this planet," Qureshi insisted.
"The forlorn, traumatised towns, mountains, plains and valleys of Indian Occupied Jammu and Kashmir reverberate today with the grim reminders of Rwanda, Srebrenica, the Rohingya, and the pogrom of Gujarat," he said.
The minister accused India of having arrested more than 6,000 people without due process. Many had been "shipped to jails all over India", he said.
India's vice-minister of foreign affairs, Vijay Thakur Singh, slammed Pakistan's "false allegations and concocted charges against my country", telling the Human Rights Council that "this fabricated narrative comes from the epicentre of global terrorism."
"The temporary preventive measures" introduced by India in Kashmir "were needed to ensure security in the face of credible threats of cross-border terrorism," she said, insisting that the issue was "entirely internal to India". -AFP