By Khizar Hayat Abbasi.
ISLAMABAD: Azad Jammu and Kashmir’s (AJK) President Sardar Masood Khan has said that the establishment of a legal think tank in Pakistan has become inevitable for greater understanding of international law, foreign policy, challenges to national security and the legal aspects of the Kashmir conflict so that jurists of the country through mutual exchange of views on the issue of national importance come up with their comprehensive recommendations on these matters.
Inaugurating a legal think tank at Millennium University College here on Wednesday, he said that multilateral judicial process is complex and therefore it is important that the whole nation must adopt a uniform legal approach to presenting the Kashmir issue.
Organized by Centre for Law and National Security (CLNS), the event was also addressed by Special Assistant to the Prime Minister and National Security Advisor, Dr Moeed Yusuf, Parliamentary Secretary Ministry of Foreign Affairs Ms Andleeb Abbas, Former Director-General, NDU Maj Gen (Retd.) Muhammad Samriz Salik, Honorary Chairman, Legal Forum for Oppressed Voices for Kashmir Justice (Retd.) Ali Nawaz Chowhan, former Federal Minister for Law, Ahmer Bilal Soofi and CEO Roots Millennium SchoolChaudhry Faisal Mushtaq.
“We have a vacuum in law-fare in relation to Kashmir and the academic discourses by think-tanks like CLNS can fill this void,” AJK President said. He proposed that the government should invite leading lawyers from across the country and seek their proposals in regard to the Kashmir issue, and then their recommendations should be presented before the international law experts in a comprehensive manner.
Apprising participants of the historical perspective of the Kashmir conflict, the state president said that the Kashmiri people keeping in view their natural bonds with Pakistan had pledged to incorporate the territory into Pakistan even before Pakistan came into being.
India, he said, during the past 73 years used its occupation forces to intimidate the Kashmiri people and even used economic and political inducements to woo the Kashmiri people. India also groomed political traitors to use them against the people of Kashmir.
“Loyalists like Farooq Abdullah and Mehbooba Mufti served Indian interests in Occupied Jammu and Kashmir and played the role of facilitators to help India consolidate its illegal occupation of Kashmir,” the President maintained.
The AJK President said that we should have a strong conviction that the entire territory of Jammu and Kashmir belongs to Pakistan. He added that India has been harping on the falsehood of Jammu and Kashmir being an integral part of India. “We are not fighting for a distant land. These are our people”, he maintained.
Sardar Masood Khan asserted that the Kashmiri people were not fighting to grab any alien territory but to liberate their own homeland from the alien’s illegal occupation. Highlighting the illegal actions taken by India in IOJK, the President said that the present BJP-RSS government in India illegally bifurcated the disputed State and made it a part of the Indian federation.
Besides this, India has also issued a fake map in which AJK and Gilgit-Baltistan were shown as a part of India. The State President said that last year under the New Domicile Rules over 2 million people from all over India have been granted Kashmiri domiciles and this number will increase to 5 million over the next two to three years.
Khan said that India through these actions is violating international humanitarian law and norms of customary international law. The Fourth Geneva Convention and Additional Protocol I, he said, prohibit deportation or transfer of a State’s own population in a territory under occupation while the Statute of International Criminal Court says that such transfers, direct or indirect, constitute a war crime.