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Friday, 1 March 2019
Referendum under UN supervison in Kashmir is the only way to ensure lasting peace in South Asia

Referendum under UN supervison in Kashmir is the only way to ensure lasting peace in South Asia

London- 01 March 2019:  Secretary General of the United Nations Mr Antonio Guterres has been told in a letter to him that as long as Kashmir remains a bone of contention between India and Pakistan South Asian region will face a catastrophic and horrendous war over the Kashmir dispute.
The letter written by Zafar Khan the Diplomatic affairs head of the JKLF, referred to   military actions taken against each other by Indian and Pakistani forces, which presented an imminent threat of full scale war between the two countries over the Kashmir dispute, and pointed out that these actions have dangerously added to an already existing volatile situation not only for twenty million people of Kashmir, but for the entire region of South Asia and beyond.
In the letter he reminds the Secretary General that Kashmir has been a bone of contention between India, Pakistan and the people of Kashmir for more than seven decades, and in view of the looming catastrophe people of Kashmir desperately, and impatiently expect statesmanship and leadership role from the UN Secretary General to take decisive steps for a lasting solution of the Kashmir dispute.
In the letter Khan strongly urged the Secretary General to ensure that the imminent danger of war between India and Pakistan is averted with post- haste, and that at this crucial juncture in the situation over Kashmir, the UN takes strong and firm actions to end the dispute with a just and lasting solution on the political status of the territory, which will bring about an end to the conflict, and suffering that has caused incalculable miseries for millions of Kashmiris since 1947.
Khan Exhorts the Secretary General by saying that in order  to achieve the cherished and noble objective of lasting peace, prosperity and empathy in the region, the United Nations  must assume full control of Kashmir’s administration, and ask India and Pakistan to vacate the entire state on both sides of the Line of Control –LoC- within three months.
He reminded the Secretary General that an ultimate objective of sane human beings must be to strive for peace and prosperity in society, which unfortunately for Kashmiris, as an objective, has remained a mirage due to the conflict, and uncertainty as a direct consequence of Indo-Pakistan confrontation over the past seventy two years.
Zafar Khan emphasised to Mr Guterres that Kashmiris  have strong, and compelling reasons to expect  from the UN and its Secretary General that he takes  their sincere and considered appeal, seriously and engages with India, Pakistan and the Kashmiri leadership, to set a time-frame within which his  administration would be able to organise, and prepare for a  free, fair and democratic referendum  so that  Kashmiris would be enabled and empowered  to decide on the political status of their homeland through the  exercise of  their inherent and inalienable right of self-determination.
He pointed out to  Mr Guterres that  a  free, fair and  democratic was the only way-forward out of the Kashmir dispute, which otherwise will remain an ongoing threat to peace in the region, if God forbid it is not already too late!
The UN Secretary General was apprised through the letter that India and Pakistan have fought costly wars over Kashmir in the past, in which citizens of Kashmir have always suffered the most. Another war between the nuclear armed neighbours will cause an annihilation for 20 million Kashmiris as well as for India, Pakistan and their neighbours in the region with an irredeemable destruction.
 Secretary General was told by Zafar Khan that even when India and Pakistan are supposedly at ‘peace,’ deployment of tens of thousands of their troops in the territory present an existential danger to millions of civilians, and that as he was  no doubt fully aware,  Kashmiris have never reconciled with the status quo  as it is the basis of  uncertainty over Kashmir’s future, and that Kashmiris have continued to struggle since 1947 for a free, fair, transparent and democratic process to regain the right to decide on the status of their country. He was reminded that he is also fully aware that Kashmiris continue to suffer immensely as a consequence of status quo and the entrenchment of Indo-Pakistan positions on the question of Kashmir’s status.
The letter informed the UN Secretary General that Kashmiris are the principle and most aggrieved party in the conflict, and they expect the Secretary General of the UN as the custodian of the world conscience, to accept their right to insist that UN’s moral and legal authority must be exercised in the interest of peace and justice.
And that the Secretary General of the UN will impress upon the leaders of India and Pakistan that neither their 1.5 billion combined population, nor the twenty million people of Kashmir must be held hostage in perpetuity to the dangers of an unresolved and uncertain status of Kashmir.
 The Secretary General was reminded therefore, that a UN administered and supervised referendum remained the only democratic and peaceful method for the resolution of Kashmir’s political status permanently.
Zafar Khan further reminded Mr Guterres that the Indo- Pakistan presence in an undecided Kashmir will inevitably perpetuate the ongoing conflict, confrontation and war between India and Pakistan. And their presence is also inconsistent with the aspirations and wishes of the people unless and until, there is an opportunity for them to give a free and a democratic verdict on the question of their country’s future.
The Secretary General of the United Nations, was told that it was not in the interest of any people or nation, to be a bone of contention between two powerful countries, as indeed Kashmir and its people are, between their neighbours, India and Pakistan.
Mr Guterres was informed that Kashmiris, like any other people want peace and peaceful resolution of the conflict. And that they wish well for the peoples of India and Pakistan, and insist that their country and they wish to become a bridge of peace between India and Pakistan instead of a bone of contention.  Secretary General was told in the letter that “Kashmiris seek your help and support, to enable them to become that bridge of peace in South Asia”!

Mahmoud Hussain
Secretary of the Diplomatic Bureau
Jammu Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF)
119-123 Cannon Street Road,
Basement North
E1 2LX

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