Kashmir dispute root cause of instability in South Asia

UNITED NATIONS: Pakistani ambassador to UN Maleeha Lodhi on Wednesday highlighted the lingering Kashmir issue in the U.N. General Assembly, while underscoring the urgency of its settlement for peace and stability in South Asia.

While Abhishek Singh, a First Secretary at the Indian Mission to the UN, harped on the same old tune that Kashmir was an integral part of India.

Responding to the Indian statement, Siama Sayed, a counselor at the Pakistan Mission to the UN, rejected New Delhi’s arguments, saying the issue of Jammu and Kashmir has to be resolved in accordance with UN Security Council resolutions.

About dialogue between the two countries, she said, “I want to remind that it was not Pakistan which stalled the dialogue process. It was India which cancelled the Foreign Secretary level talks with Pakistan scheduled for last year.”

With regard to terrorism, Ms. Sayed said Pakistan itself was the “biggest victim of terrorism planted on its soil, some of it emanating from our immediate neighbourhood.” Terrorism, she said, was a common threat that called for working together to eliminate it.

“India’s insistence on limiting the talks to a one point agenda proved that it is neither interested nor serious in engaging in a genuine dialogue,” the Pakistani delegate said. “Using the theme of terrorism, India has not only stalled the bilateral dialogue but also vitiated the overall atmosphere between the two countries.”

Pakistan’s commitment and its role and sacrifice in the fight against terrorism, including the success of our ongoing counter-terrorism operations had been praised by the entire international community, Ms. Sayed said.

“India has also failed to bring to justice the perpetrators of terrorism against innocent civilians in the Samjhota Express bombing,” she said, adding that this raises doubts about New Delhi’s willingness to convict its nationals involved in terror incidents against Muslims.



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