LAHORE: At least 16 members of European Parliament from different political groups have written to the European Commission president to use all his resources for implementing UN resolutions on Kashmir.
The groups included The Greens/European Free Alliance (Greens/EFA), the Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats (S&D), The Left in the European Parliament — GUE/NGL, Renew Europe -RE and Non-Inscrits — NI (independent and non-attached members).
In a letter to Commission President Ursula Von Der Leyen, and VP Josep Borrell, and received here by Kashmir Watch, the MEPs said that the EU should use all its leverage and tools to cooperate with Indian and Pakistani partners to honour the pledge made to the Kashmiris by the international community and create an environment conducive to the implementation of the United Nations resolutions. “We, undersigned members of the European Parliament, are writing to you to bring your attention to the alarming human rights and humanitarian situation in Jammu and Kashmir.
“The miseries of the people of Jammu and Kashmir have been amply documented in the International Human Rights Watch World Report 2021 as well as the reports of the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights in 2018 and 2019.
“This Indian-administered region had already suffered a debilitating lockdown since the revocation of its special status in 2019, and the restraints on the rights to movement, access to information, health care, education as well as free speech have been intensified by the Covid-19 pandemic,” read the letter.
They said journalists and human rights defenders have been increasingly targeted for raising their voice in support of the Kashmiri people and denouncing their situation. Arbitrary detentions continue, public assembly is still prohibited under Section 144 of the Code of Criminal Procedure 1973 (CrPC) and hundreds, including minors and several elected legislators of Jammu and Kashmir, remain under preventive detention.
Published in Dawn, August 2nd , 2021