JKLF Press Conference in London (09th March 2011)
Issues and themes addressed by Prof Zafar Khan Spokesman of Jammu Kashmir Liberation Front-JKLF- during the press conference on the Kashmir dispute, in London, on the Jammu Kashmir issue:
- Since 1947 people of Jammu Kashmir have struggled against forced division and occupation of their mother land. The struggle in Jammu Kashmir is, and has been, to assert the basic and fundamental right of the people to determine a political and constitutional future status of their choice. Since 1947 -17 million people of Jammu Kashmir, remain denied of this basic right- the right to choose and the right to freedom.
- The entire state of Jammu Kashmir- also commonly referred to as
Kashmir-consisting of the , the valleyof Kashmir Jammuprovince, Ladakh, Gilgit Baltistan, and the territories known as Azad Jammu Kashmir-AJK- remains divided between Indiaand Pakistan, with a heavy military deployment on both sides of the Line of Control-LoC.
- Almost three quarters of a million Indian military and paramilitary forces are deployed in Indian held part of the state alone, while thousands of Pakistani troops are also deployed in the
Pakistancontrolled parts of the territory stretching from Gilgit Baltistan in the north to Bhimber in the South.
- Since 1988 the Indian forces have committed some of the most barbaric acts of violence in Indian held part of Jammu Kashmir, resulting in the deaths of around a hundred thousand civilians.
Indiaand Pakistanmade solemn pledges before the international community to allow people of Kashmirthe opportunity to determine the future constitutional and political status of their country through a free, fair and democratic popular expression. These pledges and solemn undertakings by both countries have not been honoured.
- Both the international community and the United Nations have failed to address the issue of Jammu Kashmir’s future and the inherent, inalienable and unfettered right of the Kashmiris’ to self determination.
- The issue of
Kashmir’s is not a dispute between Indiaand Pakistan. Indiaand Pakistando not have the right of territorial claim on either the entire state of Jammu Kashmir or any part of it, as Pakistangovernment has done by unilaterally declaring Gilgit- Baltistan, a de-facto fifth . provinceof Pakistan
- This decision by government of
Pakistanover Gilgit-Baltistan is in contravention of the UN SC rulings on the Kashmirdispute. JKLF strongly believes that this unilateral decision of Pakistangovernment has damaged the issue.
- The right to decide on the future status of the state entirely rests with the people of Jammu Kashmir.
The future Prospects:
- However we believe that government of Pakistan can undo the damage by uniting Gilgit Baltistan with the AJK territory, to form a truly independent and democratic revolutionary government that would not only have a legitimate and independent voice to advocate for the freedom and reunification of the entire state, but would also address the day to day needs of the citizens of the unified Gilgit Baltistan and AJK regions.
- We demand that as a first step towards a true democratisation of the
Pakistancontrolled territories of Kashmir, government of Pakistanrescinds both the 1949 Karachi Agreement and the 1974 Azad Jammu Kashmir Act.
- To achieve this political and constitutional change for
Pakistancontrolled regions of Jammu Kashmir, the JKLF will launch a concerted political and diplomatic campaign both within AJK and Gilgit Baltistan as well as at international level.
JKLF strongly believes that an unresolved Kashmir issue is a perpetual bone of contention in South Asia and must be resolved with due haste in accordance with the wishes, aspirations and above all unfettered democratic expression of the people.
JKLF wishes for Jammu Kashmir to become a bridge of peace and friendship in the subcontinent, in particular between
India and Pakistan, rather than an ongoing battle ground.
The JKLF strongly believes that a fully independent, sovereign and united Jammu Kashmir provides a most viable and durable solution of the Kashmir dispute and will be in the best interest of all the three parties- India, Pakistan and the people of Jammu Kashmir- concerned.
The JKLF calls on the international community, in particular the
UK, the USA and the European Union to play a historic and people centric part in facilitating for a just and peaceful settlement of the Jammu Kashmir conflict.
JKLF is of firm belief that for a peaceful and prosperous South and South west
Asia region, all roads lead through resolution of Jammu Kashmir dispute.
JKLF demands that the Indian authorities return the mortal remains of Maqbool Butt Shaheed to his family in
Kashmir to be buried in a befitting manner.