India & Pakistan’s Kashmir Dispute Continues At UN General Assembly

The decades-old rift between India and Pakistan has been prolonged with recent accusations aimed at each other. The newest chapter continued with India labeling Pakistan as the “global epicenter of terrorism” at the ongoing UN General Assembly. Conversely, the Government of Pakistan (GoP) has responded in a statement attesting to gruesome human rights violations by India in Jammu and Kashmir, which are Muslim-majority states that are controlled by India.

Pakistan has been accused before of not facilitating sufficient anti-terrorist action, especially after the circumstances in which Osama Bin-Laden was found and killed within its borders. Bin-Laden was based a few miles away from a Pakistani military post at the time of his death. Upon his 2015 visit to India, Barack Obama warned Pakistan of halting all links with terrorism.

A statement from the GoP read:

“The dispute of Jammu and Kashmir cannot be wished away. Pakistan will continue to stand by the people of Jammu and Kashmir and extend its full diplomatic and political support to their movement for freedom from Indian oppression.”

India’s Minister of Home Affairs, Rajnath Singh, equally voiced his disappointment with “Pakistan’s continued and direct support for terrorism and terrorist groups” on Twitter.

Alluding to the alleged illegal occupation of Jammu and Kashmir, the response from Pakistan insinuates that India is progressively resorting to strong-arming tactics to repress self-determination processes.

Pakistani Prime Minister, Nawaz Sharif, instigated the verbal assaults by accusing India of irrational preconditions for dialogue and stockpiling. These are both cursors, which Pakistan interprets, not as an establishment of barriers for future discussions, but a willingness to prepare for conflict.

In his speech, Sharif labelled Burhan Wani as the beacon of the ‘Kashmiri Intifada’ after his death by Indian forces. Wani was a prominent member of Hizbul Mujahideen, a self-determinant group in Jammu and Kashmir.

“Peace and normalization between Pakistan and India cannot be achieved without the resolution of the Kashmir dispute,” echoed Sharif as it was clear that Kashmir was the precondition inhibiting dialogue.

India is reluctant to talk about Kashmir, whilst Pakistan seemingly prioritizes it as a benchmark for improving relations. Pakistani interests in India’s Kashmir is blatantly clear and is attested to by its brazen commendation of Wani and, essentially, the entire separatist movement.

China subsequently supported Pakistan’s plea for UN-backed action, and it is understandable given that its share of Kashmir was gifted to them by the latter. However, with the UN declaring that dialogue is the only solution, both Pakistan and India will continue to be at loggerheads. India’s reluctance to include  Kashmir in political discussions will encourage the dispute.

With reports and accusations of Pakistani involvement in Jammu and Kashmir, with regard to the self-determination movement, the anticipation of more border conflicts, political skulduggery, sabotage, kidnappings, and killings are pre-eminent.

Pakistan’s persistent endearment of Jammu and Kashmir and its meticulous public support could be a strategic ploy to, not only demean India but, also position itself for annexation of Jammu and Kashmir, should  it achieve self determination

Michael Harrison
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