Kashmiris demand the implementation of UN resolution: Dr. Fai

IOK - Indian Occupied Kashmir Jammu & Kashmir POK - Pakistan Occupied Kashmir

Washington, D.C. August 12, 2023: Dr. Ghulam Nabi Fai, Secretary General, World Kashmir Awareness Forum (WKAF) said that Kashmiris in Kashmir, the United States and worldwide will observe the 75th anniversary of unimplemented UN Commission for India and Pakistan (UNCIP) resolution of August 13, 1948. That resolution states that ‘the Government of India and the Government of Pakistan reaffirm their wish that the future status of the state of Jammu and Kashmir shall be determined in accordance with the will of the people.’ There was much in the resolution that was controversial between India and Pakistan, Dr. Fai added but the proposal of a plebiscite was not. That is clear from the statement made on January 28, 1948 by Ambassador Fernand van Langenhove of Belgium as the President of the Security Council. He said that ‘the documents at our disposal show agreement between the parties on the following points: the plebiscite must be conducted under conditions which will ensure complete impartiality; and the plebiscite will therefore be held under the aegis of the United Nations.’

Dr. Fai reminded that the United States, Great Britain, and France have traditionally been committed supporters of the plebiscite agreement as the only way to resolve this issue. They sponsored all of the Security Council resolutions which called for a plebiscite. Their commitment was indicated by a personal appeal made by America’s President Harry Truman and Britain’s Prime Minister Clement Atlee that differences over demilitarization be submitted to arbitration by the Plebiscite Administrator, a distinguished American war hero: Admiral Chester Nimitz. In addition, Senator Frank Graham of America visited the Subcontinent as the UN representative to negotiate the demilitarization of Kashmir prior to the plebiscite. India objected to American acting as a Plebiscite Administrator.

If this day could be observed in peace, it could have been a fitting tribute to the members of the UNCIP who had adopted the resolution unanimously. But the studied unconcern by the United Nations has given a sense of total impunity to India. It has also created the impression that the United Nations is invidiously selective about the application of the principles of human rights and democracy. Fai pointed out that frustration at India’s intransigence and the world’s hesitation to fulfill its commitment drove the people of Kashmir to be more assertive in their struggle. He added that in the past 33 years years of struggle, since 1990 alone, Kashmiris have suffered the loss of more than 100,000 civilians men, women and children, and have borne the perpetration of countless atrocities by more than 900,000 Indian military and paramilitary forces concentrated in Kashmir as an army of occupation.

Fai pointed out that India’s occupation of Kashmir has been left undisturbed by the international community, even though its validity has never been accepted. At no stage, however, have the people of Kashmir shown themselves to be reconciled to it. Kashmir’s record of opposition to its annexation by the Indian Union can by no standard be reckoned as less genuinely demonstrated than that of the countries of Eastern Europe under the dominance of the Soviet Union. But while the popular revolt in the countries of Eastern Europe was observed and reported by the international media, that in Kashmir has remained largely hidden from the world’s view. That is the reason that New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) has said that ‘news media in Kashmir is at the brink of extinction.’

Today, the consensus is that Kashmir conflict remains the underlying cause of the nuclear confrontation between the two neighboring countries. Without a just and lasting peace in Kashmir that vindicates self determination, trying to reduce missile and nuclear arsenals in South Asia will be an exercise in futility.

We still believe that Biden Administration despite its huge trade agreements with India can and should, lead the effort to achieve a fair and lasting settlement of the dispute – fair to the people most immediately involved and fair to its own commitments to democracy and human rights. By doing so, the United States can strengthen the principles of a just world order. It will also earn the gratitude of generations in Kashmir, in Pakistan and even in India itself, Dr. Fai pointed out.

Dr. Fai is the Chairman, World Forum for Peace & Justice. He can be reached at: gnfai2003@yahoo.com www.kashmirawareness.org