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Prime Minister’s Special Envoys on Jammu & Kashmir Mr. Muhammad Pervez Malik and Mr. Mohsin Shah Nawaz Ranjha have concluded a highly successful and productive visit to Turkey. During their stay, they apprised the Turkish political and parliamentary leadership, media, members of civil society, academics, think-tanks and youth representatives of the gross and systematic violations of human rights being perpetrated by the security forces in the Indian Occupied Jammu & Kashmir (IOK), while effectively projecting Pakistan’s principled stance on the Jammu & Kashmir dispute.

The Special Envoys called on the Chairperson of the Committee on National Defence of the Turkish Grand National Assembly (TGNA), Mr. Yusuf Beyazit, and briefed him about the latest situation in the IOK. Highlighting the ongoing atrocities, the Envoys called for a robust response from the international community to bring an end to impunity, and the vicious cycle of State-terrorism against the innocent Kashmiri people in IOK. Chairman Yusuf Beyazit noted that the Kashmir issue had remained unresolved for 70 years, with adverse implications for regional peace and stability. He stressed the importance of addressing the humanitarian dimensions of the dispute, along with its political aspects. He underscored the need for the earliest solution of Kashmir dispute in line with relevant UN Security Council resolutions.

Separately, the Special Envoys met with the Chairperson of the Turkish Parliament’s Committee on Human Rights Inquiry, Mr. Mustafa Yeneroglu, and highlighted the scale and severity of the human rights violations being perpetrated by the occupying forces against the innocent Kashmiris. They expressed the hope that the relevant human rights bodies would continue to call on the Indian government to end the gross violations of human rights forthwith and conduct an independent inquiry to hold accountable those responsible for these crimes. The Special Envoys, in particular, drew attention towards the use of pellet guns by the occupation forces, permanently blinding many Kashmiris — primarily young men and women. The Chairperson reiterated solidarity with the Kashmiri people and assured all possible support in highlighting their plight at all relevant forums.

Continuing their engagements, the Special Envoys met with the Chairman of the Turkey-Pakistan Cultural Association, Burhan Kayaturk, and thanked him for the resolute and unequivocal support of Turkey on Pakistan’s principled position on the issue of Jammu and Kashmir, and for highlighting the grave human rights situation in IOK. It was agreed to further strengthen on-going Parliamentary contacts between the two sides in this context.

The Special Envoys interacted extensively with the Turkish media and briefed them regarding the latest situation in IOK. The Envoys inter alia underscored that durable peace in South Asia could not be achieved without a just and lasting solution of the Kashmir dispute, in accordance with the UN Security Council resolutions, and legitimate aspirations of the Kashmiri people.

The Special Envoys also held interaction with academics, senior journalists and youth representatives, during which they highlighted that years of Indian oppression had frustrated the Kashmiri youth to a boiling point, and the extrajudicial killing of the Kashmiri youth leader, Burhan Muzaffar Wani, on 8 July 2016, had proved to be a watershed in latest indigenous uprising against the illegal occupation. Thousands of Kashmiris, predominantly the youth, took to the streets in massive protests against the atrocities and continued denial of their inalienable right to self-determination. They informed that the youth also bore the brunt of the Indian arbitrary use of force against peaceful protestors, with 110 Kashmiris martyred so far and more than 12,000 injured.

The Envoys thanked the fraternal people of Turkey for their strong support for the Kashmiri people, and expressed the hope their just and legitimate struggle for self-determination would continue to be supported unwaveringly by their Turkish brethren.

The Envoys also reiterated the strong and unwavering support of the Government and people of Pakistan for Turkey in face of all challenges. They conveyed condolences over the loss of precious lives in the recent terrorist attacks in Turkey and also prayed for all the martyrs including those who made the ultimate sacrifice in defence of Turkey’s democracy during the failed coup attempt on 15 July 2016. As a mark of solidarity, the Special Envoys visited the damaged parts of the Turkish Parliament, which was attacked on the night of 15 July, and reaffirmed Pakistan’s abiding support for Turkey and its democratic institutions.

13 October 2016

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