Sri Lanka-Pakistan ties contributing to South Asia’s peace, stability: Amb. Munir Akram

“We are both committed to the purposes and principles of the UN Charter, in particular the principles of sovereignty, equality, territorial integrity and non-interference in the internal affairs of other States: Munir Akram

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NEW YORK: Pakistan’s UN Ambassador Munir Akram told a virtual event marking Sri Lanka’s 74th independence anniversary that the Colombo-Islamabad relationship was contributing to peace and stability in the South Asian region.

“Pakistan and Sri Lanka enjoy relations of warmth and affection from the highest political level to the relationships between our peoples,” he said while felicitating the country’s leadership and the people on the occasion.

“The relationship between our peoples stretches back 2,500 years to the Buddhist and Ghandara eras.”

In his message, Ambassador Akram said, “We are both committed to the purposes and principles of the UN Charter, in particular the principles of sovereignty, equality, territorial integrity and non-interference in the internal affairs of other States.

“We have assisted each other in the recent times in the preservation of these principles in South Asia.”

Sri Lanka, he said, continues to play a vital role in multilateral affairs, he said adding that the two countries believe that in an inter-connected and globalized world, fraught with risk and challenges, the United Nations is the indispensable organization to address the unprecedented triple crisis we confront today: the health crisis triggered by the COVID-19 pandemic, accompanying the economic crisis that has severely damaged our economies, and the existential threat of climate change.

The Pakistani envoy added, “Our bilateral relations cover all areas of cooperation including defence, commerce, and culture and are marked by commonality of interests, a shared vision and mutual trust. Pakistan will not “rest or relent” until the Kashmiri people have realized their right to self-determination through a free and impartial plebiscite in accordance with the UN Security Council resolutions, Ambassador Munir Akram said Friday.

Speaking in a webinar commemorating Kashmir Solidarity Day on Feb 5, the Pakistan envoy said that the Kashmir dispute was the unfinished agenda of self-determination in the South Asian sub-continent.

At the outset, Ambassador Akram welcomed the distinguished panelists, reminding the audience that it was a day to reaffirm “our unflinching support to our Kashmir brothers and sisters” waging a heroic and epic struggle against India’s barbaric occupation for more than seven decades, and salute them for their valiant struggle and exemplary sacrifices.

We will continue to utilize every opportunity to advocate and promote the just Kashmiri struggle for self-determination and to expose India’s cruel oppression and naked occupation of Jammu and Kashmir,” the Pakistani envoy said. Pakistan, he added, would continue to demand from India to reverse its unilateral and illegal measures instituted since 5th August 2019; end its oppression and human rights violations against the people of Kashmir; and halt and reverse the demographic changes in the occupied territory.

“Prime Minister Imran Khan’s strong advocacy of the rights of Kashmiris has revived global recognition of India’s grave and human rights violations and crimes in occupied Jammu and Kashmir,” Ambassador Akram said, adding that the world was now aware that a just resolution of Kashmir dispute was essential for durable peace and security in South Asia.

The Security Council, he pointed out, in its several resolutions reaffirmed right of self-determination of the Kashmiris and for its exercise, outlined the method of fair and impartial plebiscite under the UN auspices.

Having accepted the principle of self-determination, India had since, initially through obfuscation and deceit, and later through oppression and force, prevented the holding of a UN-supervised plebiscite in violation of a series of UNSC resolutions.

 

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