MIRPUR - Azad Jammu Kashmir (AJK) President, Sardar Masood Khan, has said that because of US’s protection to India in the United Nations Security Council (UNSC), the latter is operating with absolute impunity in the Indian Occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IOJ&K).

This is where, he said, realpolitik is steering dynamics of the Kashmir dispute. Both the US and India have economic and defense partnerships, and this has become a barrier for the US, as it sees the Kashmir dispute through the prism of India, he said.

The AJK President made these remarks while addressing a virtual conference of club members, belonging to different walks of life, of a prestigious IVY League institute. The address was followed by a comprehensive Q & A session.

In his introductory remarks, the President while explaining the genesis of the Kashmir issue said that in 1947, the people of Jammu of Kashmir had to choose either to accede to Pakistan or India. The partition did not take place according to plan and India invaded the territory and had since occupied it. “Things have not changed since then. The killing spree continues”, he said.

New Domicile Rules introduced in IOJ&K, are akin to policy followed by Nazi Germany against Jews

The President said that on August 5 of last year, the people of IOJ&K were stripped of their special rights to education, employment, acquisition of property and permanent residence which had been protected under Article 35-A. Subsequently, in the same year on October 31 and April 2 of this year they – without consulting its people – India annexed IOJ&K (Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh) bringing it under the direct control of Delhi and then after introduced New Domicile Rules respectively.

The fascist Indian government has begun settling non-native Hindus from all over India in IOJ&K. He said the plan was to transform the demography and reduce the Muslim majority into a minority. “This is, plain and simple, land grab. Kashmiris are running from pillar to post just to prove that they are State subject. They are facing, disenfranchisement, dispossession and displacement”, he said. If this continues, in a matter of a few years, we would not have a Kashmir with its distinct identity, he warned.

“The New Domicile Rules introduced in IOJ&K, is akin to the policy followed by Nazi Germany against the Jews, based initially on economic strangulation, followed by demonization and marginalization and finally physical extermination”, said Masood Khan.

President Masood said that the killings had not been stopped, rather they had been intensified. Young Kashmiris are incarcerated, torture of detainees is common, sexual violence is rampant and communication blackout persists for the past 11 months as journalists continue to be arrested and their content strictly monitored and censored under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act 1967.

“Genocide, war crimes, ethnic cleansing, crimes against humanity is taking place in IOJ&K. These are a violation of the Geneva Convention, the UN Charter, covenants of the 1960s, numerous treaties, economic and cultural rights, ICC statues and UNSC resolutions”, he said while adding that US-based Genocide Watch had declared that IOJ&K had entered the 8th stage of the 10 stages of genocide that had been defined by them. The last four stages defined by Dr Gregory H Stanton’s (founder of Genocide Watch) are: Stage 7: Preparation for the “Final Solution”; Stage 8: Persecution of victims identified and separated out; Stage 9: Extermination; and finally Stage 10: Denial of everything.

The AJK President maintained that this all did not stop here, as the Indian Prime Minister, the Defense Minister, Home Minister and RSS Chief claimed Gilgit-Baltistan and Azad Jammu and Kashmir as part of their union territory and had threatened to “take it back” using military aggression further backing up these threats with the use of nuclear weapons. He added that an unresolved Jammu and Kashmir dispute was a ticking geo-strategic flashpoint and a risk of a nuclear war was very real. He urged the United States leadership and the global community to help avert a nuclear war between the nations neighbouring Jammu and Kashmir.