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Lodhi warns of serious humanitarian crisis in the curfew-bound disputed territory

Pakistan's Permanent Representative to the United Nations (UN) Maleeha Lodhi on Friday said that as things stand in Indian occupied Kashmir causing bigger humanitarian crisis. 

While Lodhi commenting during an interview with the Saudi-based Al-Arabiya television channel as the military lockdown of the occupied valley entered its 27th day said that Indian occupied Kashmir (IoK) had become an armed cage, urging the international community to intervene in the area before it was too late. 

The ambassador stressed that the people of the valley should be given the right to decide their own destiny.


"The United Nations Security Council (UNSC) has an obligation to resolve the decades-old Kashmir problem by implementing its own resolutions that pledged the right of self-determination to the Kashmiri people," Ambassador Lodhi told the Saudi channel. 

The Pakistani envoy also questioned the silence of the international community on the issue.

"The whole world subscribes to the principle of self-determination. Why should it be denied to the people of Jammu and Kashmir?" she asked. 

Lodhi said it was time for the international community to act before it was too late, pointing out, that like the issue of Palestine, the issue of occupied Kashmir has also been on the Security Council's agenda. 

"The international community should respond to the fast deteriorating situation in occupied Kashmir because it poses a danger to peace and security of South Asian region," noted Ambassador Lodhi. 

She also added that Pakistan believed that the IoK situation also endangered international peace and that the 15-member UN Security Council should live up to its responsibility.

Calling India's decision to revoke Kashmir's special status as "illegal and illegitimate", Lodhi said the Security Council acknowledged the fact that it was an international dispute when the 15-member body met recently. 

"There is a communication blackout, people cannot communicate with anybody, telephone lines are not working, the Internet has been suspended, people are not allowed to go out and pray," she said. 

"The anger and rage are there, it has been bottled up because as I said people have been imprisoned," she added. 

"Once the curfew is lifted, this anger and rage will find expression," she warned. 

On August 5, the Indian government had revoked the special constitutional autonomy granted to the people of IoK through a presidential decree.

A curfew was imposed in the valley following the decision to quell dissent.

Thousands of innocent Kashmiris have been arrested by Indian security forces since, and there have been widespread allegations of torture and abuse of innocent civilians by the Indian forces during detention.

About human rights violations in occupied Kashmir, the Pakistani envoy said such abuses have been fully documented by a number of organisations.

"The situation has now worsened to the point that 14 million people of Jammu and Kashmir are being held as prisoners in their own land, in their own homes, it has become an armed cage," said Lodhi.

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Pakistan English News

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