Kashmir is not only a regional but a global issue given the grave violations of human rights in IIOJK: Analysts
Center of Pakistan and International Relations (COPAIR), Islamabad organized an international conference on “Kashmir under the sanctity of UN Declaration of Human Rights and Challenges to Kashmiri’s right to self-determination,” on International Human Rights Day. This conference engaged the international community, especially the civil society, Media and Academia to raise their voice against Human Rights Violations in Indian Occupied Kashmir. This conference acted as a platform for the global movement on Kashmir. The panellist included Dr Tehseen Nisar, Dr Domenico Melidoro, Dr Fabio Balsamo, Dr Barbara Gallo, Syed Mehmood Kazmi, Prof. Angelo Santagostino, and Amna Malik President COPAIR.
President COPAIR Amna Malik commenced the session by highlighting the important role of the international community for advocating the human rights of citizens. She stressed that the global community should highlight the repression of radicalized Government of India in the occupied region. Law fare and Diplomatic advocacy at the international level also remained the focus of discussion of this conference organized on International Human Rights Day.
Dr Tehseen Nisar shared the findings of her research and shed light on the quintessential relevance of Kashmir within the debate of Universal Human Rights. She was of the view that India should adhere to the international human rights obligations and follow the recommendations provided by OHCHR and OIC conference in Niger unanimously supporting the Kashmiri cause is a major diplomatic win for Pakistan.
Dr Domenico Melidoro, a research scholar from Italy talked about issues of multiculturalism between minority rights and human rights in religiously volatile societies. Dr Domenico said that an ideal democracy never compromises on the rights of minorities and international organizations like the UN should play their role in avoiding the abomination in occupied Kashmir by the incumbent Indian government.
Dr Fabio Balsamo talked about the prevalent conditions of religious minorities in contemporary societies with a specific focus on the religious intolerance in Indian occupied Jammu and Kashmir. Dr Balsamo said that the Covid-19 pandemic presented a propitious opportunity to India for justifying and furthering their undue restrictions on minorities and, in particular, on the Islamic communities of Kashmir.
Syed Mahmood Kazmi, a Kashmiri hailing from the USA, also shared his experiences of suffering and repression by the Indian occupational forces. He focused on the disruption of Kashmiri children’s right to education due to widespread lockdowns and fear of life. In his zealous speech, he recognized the loss of education due to school closures and the rise of mental fears in Kashmiri children.
Dr Barbara Gallo, a journalist from Rome spoke about the denial of freedom of speech and communication blackout in Indian occupied Kashmir. She was of the view that one of the most dangerous weapons used by the incumbent BJP-led government is the blackout of communication in Kashmir. She added that such communication bans are collective punishment and it is against the standards of international human rights law to limit freedom of expression.
Prof Angelo Santagostino shared his European perspective on the human rights question of Jammu and Kashmir by saying that it has been over a century since Kashmiris are suffering from human rights abuses. Prof said that Modi’s regime is engaged in the centralization of power and moving towards cultural and religious intolerance. He concluded with saying that European integration and Franco-German détente could be replicated in case of Pakistan and India and this way Kashmiri’s suffering could be put to an end.
Ms Amna Malik – President Center of Pakistan and International Relations, Islamabad concluded the session by providing recommendations and invited the panelists to share their thoughts as well. She started by stressing that there is a need to revisit our policy on Kashmir and reinforce the diplomatic efforts to expedite the process of resolution of this prolonged issue. She also called for a dialogue comprising of all the regional and global powers with a pacific approach. Ms Amna also pledged to keep on advocating for the basic rights of Kashmiri people.
Approximately 200 people from Pakistan and abroad, including representatives of the public and private sector and students attended the three-hour-long session.