Islamabad: Secretary-General Antonio Guterres calls for “enhanced dialogue” between India and Pakistan over disputed Kashmir while calling for “full respect for humans rights and continental freedoms” in the region.
United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres repeated calls on Sunday for de-escalation and diplomacy in the resolution of Kashmir dispute between Pakistan and India, saying “UN Security Council resolutions [should] be implemented”, humans rights “respected”, and “continental freedoms” allowed in the Himalayan region.
“It is clear that we have taken a position about the need for Security Council resolutions to be implemented and for effective de-escalation and dialogue linked to that, with another very important condition which is full respect for humans rights and continental freedoms in Jammu & Kashmir,” Guterres said.
The UN chief arrived in Islamabad earlier on Sunday, for a four-day diplomatic visit to Pakistan.
During a news conference with Pakistan’s Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi he called for “full freedom of movement” of UN’s military observer group (UNMOGP) on both sides of the region divided by a highly militarised de facto border, Line of Control.
“In relation to the ceasefire, I visited UNMOGP. We believe that UNMOGP should have full freedom of movement. It has on the Pakistani side, we hope that this will also be achieved on the other side. We will be strengthening its equipment capacity in order to better be able to implement its mandate.”
Guterres said he has always been advocating the need for an “enhanced dialogue” between India and Pakistan and for that he offered his good office more than once.
The Indian foreign affairs ministry immediately rejected Guterres’ mediation offer on Kashmir
Recalling the UN Human Rights Commission reports on Kashmir, he said the two reports played “a very important role in clarifying the situation” in Kashmir.
“So our strong commitment is clear, human rights must be respected everywhere in the world, but also there,” he added.
The UN chief remarks came some seven months into a stringent lockdown on the Kashmir, a move widely decried by human rights groups as well as the global Islamic community.
Pakistani Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi meanwhile highlighted his government’s concerns over New Delhi’s actions in Kashmir and its decision to unilaterally annex the territory.
“We feel that, collectively, we have to agree on a road map of repatriation, which is time-bound, which is supported by the international community and is well resourced”, he said.