PAKISTAN President Arif Alvi summoned a joint session of the Parliament on Tuesday, hours after the Indian Government on Monday abolished Article 370 of the Constitution which granted Special Status to Jammu and Kashmir. The joint sitting, to be held at 11 am (local time) on Tuesday, will review the tense situation in Jammu and Kashmir and along the Line of Control. It will also suggest the Government a plan of action to deal with the fallout of India’s decision.
Separately, Army chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa will hold a meeting of the Corps Commanders and discuss the security situation, State-run Pakistan Television reported. The Indian Government on Monday revoked Article 370 which gave Special Status to Jammu and Kashmir and proposed that the State be bifurcated into two Union Territories, Jammu and Kashmir, and Ladakh. Reacting to the announcement, Pakistan Foreign Office said, “Jammu and Kashmir is an internationally recognised disputed territory” and “no unilateral step by the Government of India can change this disputed status.”
The FO also said that Pakistan will exercise all possible options “to counter the illegal steps.” Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi said Pakistan would request and appeal to the United Nations, Organisation of Islamic Cooperation, friendly countries and human rights organisations not to remain silent on this issue.
“We intend to firmly highlight our stance in our meetings with the US delegation visiting Pakistan and with the International Community at large,” Qureshi said as he reaffirmed Pakistan’s political, diplomatic and moral support to the people of Jammu and Kashmir. The Indian move was also “strongly condemned” by Pakistani politicians, including Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) president and Opposition leader Shehbaz Sharif who termed it “unacceptable” and an “act of treason” against the United Nations.
He also called on the Pakistani leadership to immediately demand an emergency session of the UN Security Council and to consult with China, Russia, Turkey, Saudi Arabia and other friendly countries. Jailed former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s daughter Maryam Nawaz lashed out at Prime Minister Imran Khan for “wreaking irreversible damage not only to the country but to Kashmiris who needed a strong Pakistan to support them.” In a series of tweets, Maryam, who is also vice-president of main Opposition party PML-N, lambasted Prime Minister Khan for his failure to anticipate about the Indian government’s plan on Kashmir. Pakistan Peoples Party Chairperson Bilawal Bhutto Zardari also condemned the move. Special Assistant to Prime Minister Imran Khan on Information and Broadcasting Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan said Pakistan will continue extending “moral, diplomatic and political support” to the Kashmiris.
Will exercise all possible options to counter India’s move: Pak
PAKISTAN on Monday strongly rejected the Indian Government’s decision to scrap Article 370 that gave special status to Jammu and Kashmir and vowed to exercise all possible options, including appealing to the UN, to counter India’s “illegal” and “unilateral” step. Reacting to the announcement, Pakistan Foreign Office said “Jammu and Kashmir is an internationally recognised disputed territory”.
“No unilateral step by the Government of India can change this disputed status, as enshrined in the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) resolutions. Nor will this ever be acceptable to the people of Jammu and Kashmir and Pakistan,” it said. Pakistan strongly condemns and rejects the announcements made by the Indian Government regarding Jammu and Kashmir, it said. “As the party to this international dispute, Pakistan will exercise all possible options to counter the illegal steps,” it said.
Pakistan reaffirms its abiding commitment to the Kashmir cause and its political, diplomatic and moral support to the people of Jammu and Kashmir for realisation of their inalienable right to self-determination, the statement said. Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi said Pakistan would request and appeal to the United Nations, Organisation of Islamic Cooperation, friendly countries and human rights organisations not to remain silent on this issue. The situation in Kashmir was more serious than before, Qureshi said. “We will consult our legal experts...,” he added. “There are several resolutions of the United Nations Security Council on this and they have accepted this as a disputed territory… Indian Prime Minister Vajpayee had accepted this as a disputed territory,” said the Foreign Minister. Qureshi said the move by India showed they no longer had any hope from Kashmiris.
The Foreign Minister stressed that Pakistan like before would continue to support the Kashmiri people and history would prove India’s decision wrong. Pakistan on Sunday warned India that it is ready to respond to any “misadventure or aggression” by the Indian forces, as the country’s top civil and military leadership discussed the sudden spike in tensions with New Delhi during a meeting of the National Security Committee. Prime Minister Imran Khan on Sunday said that India is totally disregarding the international obligations and the country’s “arrogance will only result in heightening the conflict dynamics in the region.” Khan invited the attention of the world leaders and international bodies towards “irresponsible, unilateral and irrational behaviour” of the Indian leadership.