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Pakistan appreciates the demand by UN Human Rights mechanisms, to India to immediately release the Kashmiri human rights defender Khurram Parvez who was arrested on 14 September when he was to board a flight for Geneva to attend the 33rdsession of Human Rights Council. Pakistan also appreciates the continued focus by the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights on the grave human rights violations, being perpetrated by Indian occupation forces, in Jammu & Kashmir.

UN human rights mechanisms dealing with enforced/involuntary disappearances, human rights defenders, arbitrary detention, right to freedom of peaceful assembly/of association and the right to freedom of opinion and expression, while demanding the release of Mr. Khurram Parvez, have expressed serious concern at the use of the Jammu and Kashmir Public Safety Act against Mr. Parvez. As the UN mechanisms have pointed out, his arrest represents a direct retaliation for his legitimate activities as a human rights defender and the exercise of his fundamental freedoms, including freedom of expression and association.

Mr. Khurram Parvez’ arrest and incarceration was repeatedly raised as a matter of serious concern by the Pakistan delegation at the recent session of the Human Right Council, demanding his immediate release.

Curfew continues to be imposed in different parts of Indian Occupied Jammu & Kashmir for over a 102 days, its youth continue to face death, life long blindness, and the most odious forms of torture. Every form of human rights violation is being perpetrated by the Indian occupation forces against the innocent Kashmiri people, including through the use of pellet guns. Indian abhorrent occupation policies include destruction of homes, businesses, and livelihoods of innocent Kashmiris.

UN High Commissioner on Human Rights is urged to also demand India to immediately release Mr. Khurram Parvez and to insist on India to give unhindered access to the proposed OHCHR mission to Indian Occupied Kashmir.

19 October 2016

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