Ankara | WTNS | September 23:On day two of the high-level UNGA, the Turkish President said, ‘The Kashmir conflict, which is also key to the stability and peace of South Asia, is still a burning issue.’
In yet another attempt to raise the matter of Jammu and Kashmir at the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA), Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Tuesday said that “Kashmir conflict is still a burning issue”.
On day two of the high-level UNGA, the Turkish President said, “The Kashmir conflict, which is also key to the stability and peace of South Asia, is still a burning issue.”
At last year’s high-level meeting of the General Assembly, only Erdogan and Mahatir Mohammed, the then-Prime Minister of Malaysia, joined Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan to talk about Kashmir.
Last year, weeks after India scrapped Article 370 of the erstwhile state of Jammu and Kashmir, Erdogan had raised the issue of Kashmir at the UNGA 74th session and criticized the international community for failing to pay attention to the Kashmir conflict.
This year after Pakistan’s Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi raised up the Kashmir issue, Erdogan too criticized the situation in Kashmir.
In a pre-recorded statement, the leader said that it is imperative to solve the issue of Kashmir through dialogue.
“We are in favour of solving this issue through dialogue within the framework of the United Nations resolutions, especially in line with the expectations of the people of Kashmir,” Erdogan added.
In the last one year, Pakistan-ally Turkey has used several platforms to raise the issue of Jammu and Kashmir. However, India, time and again, has told the west-Asian country that Kashmir is an internal matter of India.
Last week, India had slammed Pakistan, Turkey and Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) at the 46th session of the Human Rights Council for their remarks on India’s internal affairs.
Responding to reference made by Turkey on Jammu and Kashmir, India in its right to reply had advised Turkey to refrain from commenting on the internal affairs of India and develop a better understanding of democratic practices.
India also repeatedly emphasized and repeated its position on the comments made by the vis a vis Kashmir.
First secretary, Permanent Mission of India in Geneva Pawan Badhe who delivered India’s right to reply said: “We reject the reference made by the OIC to the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir which is an integral part of India. The OIC has no locus standi to comment on internal affairs of India. The OIC has allowed itself to be misused by Pakistan to subverse its own Agenda. It is for the members of the OIC to decide if it is in their interests to allow Pakistan to do so.”
Taking to Twitter hours after Erdogan raked the Kashmir issue in the UNGA, India’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations, TS Tirumurti, said Ankara should learn to respect the sovereignty of other nations and reflect on its policies more deeply.
“We have seen remarks by President of Turkey on Indian UT of Jammu and Kashmir. They constitute gross interference in India’s internal affairs and are completely unacceptable. Turkey should learn to respect the sovereignty of other nations and reflect on its policies more deeply,” Mr Tirumurti tweeted.
Following a meeting in the capital Islamabad with Turkey’s envoy to the South Asian country, the chairman of Pakistan’s Parliamentary Committee on Kashmir, Shehryar Afridi, said Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s stance on Kashmir has helped internationally highlight the issue.
“President Erdogan has played vital role in exposing Hindutva designs against the people of Kashmir and Indian minorities as the goons of proscribed Rashtariya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) were lynching Muslims, Christians, Sikhs and Dalit Hindus with impunity and the Indian authorities were providing assistance in actions against the Indian minorities and Kashmiris,” Afridi said in a statement after his meeting with Ambassador Mustafa Yurdakul.
He said India was destabilizing peace in the region between the three nuclear powers of Pakistan, China and India, warning that any “misadventure” on Kashmir could jeopardize the region, affecting more than half of the world’s population.
“Turkey has been playing leading role for whole Ummah [Muslims across the world] to stand united against their common enemy,” said Afridi, stressing the urgent need to raise attention among the international media on the alleged atrocities of India in Kashmir.
He also lauded the Turkish embassy’s key role in advancing relations between Pakistan and Turkey.
For his part, Yurdakul underlined that Ankara’s role in voicing Kashmiris’ grievances would continue