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British Parliamentarians Condemn India’s Draconian Measures In Kashmir

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LONDON: British lawmakers condemned the draconian measures taken by India in occupied Kashmir while calling for an end to human rights abuses committed by Indian security forces in the disputed valley.

The development came at the Kashmir Conference organised by the Tehreek-e-Kashmir’s (TeK) United Kingdom chapter in the British Parliament. The event was co-chaired by British MP Jess Phillips, TeK president Raja Fahim Kayani, and Azad Jammu & Kashmir (AJK) President Sardar Masood Khan called as the chief guest.

Speaking on the occasion, the AJK president said that genocide in Kashmir can only be averted if the international community pressurises New Delhi to stop human rights violations and adhere to the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) resolution.

He also said that the Indian occupying forces conducted routine search operations to harass Kashmiris citizens.

Labour Party’s deputy leader and former defence minister Tom Watson voiced his support for the Kashmiris, while MP Byrne dismissed India’s stance that the matter was a bilateral issue.

“Human rights violations are an international matter,” said the British lawmaker, adding that India must end the curfew imposed on the valley. “It is time the Kashmir dispute be resolved with the consent of the Kashmiris – the main stakeholders,” he said.

Reiterating support for the Kashmir cause, Phillips added that she would continue to push for a permanent solution to the Kashmir problem.

Meanwhile, AJK Public Accounts Committee Chairman Abdul Rashid Turabi also highlighted how Indian state terrorism had divided thousands of families by forcing Kashmiris to migrate from their ancestral areas after 1947.

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Hurriyat leader and Jammu and Kashmir Salvation Movement (JKSM) Chairman Altaf Ahmad Bhat said Kashmiris wanted basic rights and sought implementation of the right to self-determination promised by the UNSC.

Bhat said that schools and businesses in the valley have been shut down since August 5, which was causing many problems for the common citizens.

“Educational institutions have been turned into army camps by the Indian troops,” he said. He demanded from the international community to call on New Delhi to release political prisoners, civilians, human rights activists and end the information and communication blackout.

“Kashmiris have given generations to this cause – every family has suffered a loss due to Indian brutality. Every mother, sister, and daughter has a painful story to tell. We have been suffering for the past seven decades,” he said.

He concluded by saying that the Kashmiris looked up to the United Kingdom to push for a permanent solution to the conflict.

MPs Jonathan Word, Cheryl Gillian, Tom Watson, Paula Sharif, John Cryer, Lisa Forbes, Steve McCabe, Kate Hollern, Steve Baker, Rupa Huq, Valerie Vaz, Trace Brabin, Liam Byrne, Liz McInnes, Imran Hussain, Afzal Khan, Tanmanjeet Singh Dhesi, Muhammad Yasin, Naz Shah, Shabana Mahmood, Rosie Duffield, John Speller, Colleen Fletcher, Ruth Smeeth, Jim McCahon, Judith Cummins, Kerry McCarthy, Stella Gracey, Roger Gadstiff and others also voiced their support for the rights of Kashmiris.

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Naya Daur