Pakistan rejects India’s efforts to portray ‘normalcy’ in IOK

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Our correspondent

ISLAMABAD

Pakistan “categorically rejected” Indian government’s attempts to portray a totally false impression of normalcy in India-Occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IOK) and said the territory continued to be the largest prison in the world with the heaviest deployment of Indian occupation forces.

In a statement issued on Sunday, the Foreign Office spokesperson said that despite the Indian government’s claims, occupied Kashmir was still under a lockdown while Kashmiri leaders remained under house arrest.

“Indian-occupied Jammu and Kashmir continues to be the largest prison in the world with the heaviest deployment of Indian occupation forces since the coercive, unilateral and illegal Indian actions of August 5, 2019 aimed at altering the internationally recognised disputed status of IOJ&K and changing its demographic structure to preempt the results of a UN plebiscite,” the statement read.

The Foreign Office also termed Indian reports that portrayed two farmers, who had inadvertently crossed the border in August, as terrorists as a “farcical attempt”.

“This was despite the fact that the incident was discussed during the weekly military hotline contact between both sides on August 27, 2019 when Indian authorities acknowledged that they were inadvertent crossers and informed Pakistan that routine formalities are taking place after which they will be returned,” the spokesperson said.

On August 21, two farmers in Azad Jammu and Kashmir, identified as Muhammad Nazeem, 21, and 30-year-old Khalil Ahmed, had unintentionally crossed the Line of Control near Hajipir while they were out for cutting grass.

The Foreign Office press release issued highlighted that Islamabad had “sensitised the international community” about India’s efforts to raise a false flag operation to divert attention from the situation in occupied Kashmir and blame Pakistan for “[India’s] indefensible actions”.

The statement also denounced “a false and fabricated story”, where Indian authorities had “blamed deaths of some Kashmiris in the occupied territory on ‘Pakistani militants’”.

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