The Kashmiri people and Pakistanis all over the world commemorated Wednesday, Oct. 27 as Black Day to express solidarity with the people of Indian illegally occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IIOJK).
“On this day 74 years ago, Indian forces landed in Srinagar to occupy and oppress the innocent people of Indian illegally occupied Jammu and Kashmir in a blatant violation of international law. This day marked the beginning of a long night of oppression for the Kashmiris under Indian occupation and a grave human tragedy that continues to this very day,” said Pakistan’s envoy to Turkey Muhammad Syrus Sajjad Qazi, speaking at the Economic and Social Research Center (ESAM) think tank.
He said India’s entire claim lies on the dubious “accession” instrument purportedly signed by one man on behalf of millions of his subjects, whose validity is itself highly questionable from a factual and legal standpoint.
“Since then, IIOJK has become the most militarized zone in the world, where close to 900,000 security forces have been deployed by India to curb the legitimate struggle of the Kashmiris for their inalienable right to self-determination.
“These military deployments are in breach of [UN] Security Council resolutions as well as bilateral agreements. The sheer size, deployments and repressive actions of the Indian forces in occupied Jammu and Kashmir amount to foreign and colonial occupation,” he added.
He emphasized that India’s occupation forces have committed massive human rights violations widely known to the international community and that these violations have been documented by international media as well as in two reports of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights in 2018 and 2019.
“In the past few years under BJP [Bharatiya Janata Party] rule in India, human rights violations in IIOJK have reached epic proportions, which have been covered in the dossier. It includes accounts of 3,432 cases of war crimes identifying the units and personnel of the Indian occupied forces, which have committed these crimes. The documented crimes include torture in custody, collective punishment, violence against women and children, enforced disappearances and killings, and the use of pellet guns and cluster munitions. The perpetrators of these crimes enjoy state patronage and are shielded by a sham system of justice. The government of Pakistan also published audio and video evidence,” Qazi stated.
Qazi stressed that India must recognize that no amount of brutalization of Kashmiris can suppress their voice and the legitimate movement to achieve their inalienable right to self-determination.
He noted that the Jammu and Kashmir dispute is an unfinished agenda of the partition of the Indian subcontinent, which must be resolved in accordance with the UN Security Council resolutions for sustainable peace and security in South Asia.
Temel Karamollaoglu, the head of Turkey’s Saadet Party, in his statement said the UN resolutions are very clear, especially for Kashmir. Kashmiri people determine their own future, determine the administration themselves, but for some reason, this occupation of India continues and its cruelty is increasing.
He said a resistance that has been going on for 73 years is a justified resistance but a resistance with no results.
“As citizens and Muslims, we stand by Kashmir’s just cause and will continue to interpret their problems. Our continuation of this struggle will not be of any use to the people of Kashmir in the Islamic world if it does not result in success. I hope that in the coming years, Islamic countries will stand up and each one of them will worry about these problems. If there is a disagreement between us, of course, we must find a solution together. But of course, we intend to show our determination to support an armed struggle in order to prevent any oppression or injustice against the Islamic world,” he added.
New Delhi has long contended that Indian forces were sent after tribals from the neighboring North-West Frontier Province (now Khyber Pakhtunkhwa) arrived in the region, with Hindu Dogra ruler Hari Singh asking for help.
Pakistan, however, maintains that India had dispatched its forces to annex the region before any tribal force arrived there, violating the Indian Independence Act of 1947.
Islamabad accuses Singh of conspiring with the Indians and the British, saying that the plan culminated in the Instrument of Accession that was drafted in Delhi and presented to the Hindu ruler on Oct. 26, 1947.
Since then, the picturesque valley has been a bone of contention between the two nuclear arch-rivals, who have fought two full-fledged wars — in 1948 and 1965 — and a three-week Kargil skirmish on Kashmir.
While one-third of the region, known as Azad Kashmir, is administered by Pakistan, two-thirds of the disputed Himalayan valley is controlled by India.