ISLAMABAD - Pakistan on Friday called upon India to honour commitment of its first prime minister to resolve Kashmir dispute in accordance with the UN resolutions and in accordance with the aspirations of Kashmiri people.

“We regret that India, in its efforts to rewrite history, has forgotten the acknowledgement and commitment made by its first prime minister Jawaharlal Nehru in the context of Kashmir dispute”, Foreign Office Spokesperson told weekly press briefing.

She recalled that on October 27, 1947, in a message to the prime ministers of Pakistan and UK, Mr Nehru said, “I should like to make it clear that the question of aiding Kashmir in this emergency is not designed in any way to influence the State to accede to India. Our view which we have repeatedly made public is that the question of accession in any disputed territory or state must be decided in accordance with the wishes of the people and we adhere to the view.”

“Likewise on November 2, 1947, in a broadcast to his nation on the All India Radio, the Indian prime minister said and I quote ‘We have decided that the fate of Kashmir is ultimately to be decided by the people. The pledge we have given and the Maharaja has supported not only to the people of Kashmir but to the world. We will not and cannot back out of it. We are prepared when peace and law and order have been established to have a referendum held under international auspices like the UN. We want it to be a fair and just reference to the people and we shall accept their verdict’.”

Again on August 1, 1952, the Indian prime minister stated in the Indian parliament, “I should like to say that the ultimate decision will be made in the minds and hearts of the men of Kashmir and not in this parliament or in the UN... First of all, let me say clearly that we accept the basic proposition that the future of Kashmir is going to be decided finally by the goodwill and pleasure of its people. The goodwill and the pleasure of this parliament is of no importance in this matter, not because this parliament does not have the strength to decide the question of Kashmir but because any kind of imposition would be against the principle that this parliament holds.... If, however, the people of Kashmir do not wish to remain with us, let them go by all means; we will not keep them against their will, however, painful it may be to us. We want no forced marriages, no forced unions”.

The spokesperson said that the elections in Indian Occupied Kashmir that India holds under the shadow of gun are not a substitute for exercise of the right to self determination. This has been made amply clear by the United Nations as well. “We see that Kashmiris have, by sacrificing their youth and lives of more than 100,000, over the decades, have made it clear that they do not accept this forced union”, she said.

Tasnim Aslam said the sacrifices rendered by Kashmiri youth for their just struggle have made it clear that they do not accept the forced union with India. She said that the reality is that India is obsessed with illusions of grandeur. She said right of Kashmiri people to self-determination is also enshrined in numerous United Nations Security Council resolutions. India, she lamented, continues to usurp this right with impunity in violation of the UN Security Council resolutions and UN charter.

The spokesperson said unlike India, Pakistan’s stance on Jammu and Kashmir is based on the UN resolutions, international law and underpinned by political and moral principles. Tasnim said Pakistan commemorates Kashmir solidarity day every year to express its unwavering political, moral and diplomatic support.

When asked about the visit of Chinese foreign minister to Pakistan, the spokesperson confirmed the visit. She said the dates of the visit are being worked out. During the visit, the two sides will discuss the entire gamut of bilateral relations as well as the regional situation. She said the Chinese president will also visit Pakistan this year.

To a question, Tasnim Aslam said Pakistan supports reforms in the United Nations Security Forces but not the creation of new power centres. About Afghan refugees, she said Pakistan is hosting 1.6 million Afghan refugees. “We have signed a trilateral agreement with the Afghan government and the UNHCR for their return to their homeland by the end of this year”.

She expressed the confidence that the Afghan government and the UN agency will prepare the ground for the return of Afghan refugees. She said Pakistan has discussed the issue of refugees with the Afghan government and there is no friction between the two sides on the issue. The spokesperson rejected reports that Pakistani security forces are harassing the Afghan refugees saying “they are our brothers and sisters and we want their honourable and voluntary repatriation” to their homeland.