ISLAMABAD - UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres yesterday called for the implementation of the UN resolutions on Kashmir - a strong boost to Pakistan’s stance.Speaking at a joint news conference along with Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi here, Antonio Guterres said full respect should be given to human and fundamental rights in Occupied Kashmir. He said relevant UN resolutions should be implemented on the issue. The UN chief said Pakistan under Prime Minister Imran Khan was promoting peace and lamented India’s aggressive attitude. Guterres said that it was now high time that the world gets to see the positive image of Pakistan,

He said that the main objective of his current visit was to highlight the true and vibrant image of the country to the world.

Antonio Guterres said that Pakistan was a country founded on Muhammad Ali Jinnah’s ideology and Allama Muhammad Iqbal’s philosophy.

Expressing concerns on the friction between neighboring countries - Pakistan and India -  the UN chief said that he had serious concerns over the current tensions between the countries. He stressed that the only way forward in the conundrum is dialogue. He added that both countries should show restraint at the working boundaries and ensure that the strife does not escalate into something regrettable.

Guterres said he was concerned over the prevalent human rights situation in the illegally annexed Indian Occupied Kashmir.

The UN General Secretary appreciated the improved security situation in Pakistan.

On Pakistan

I have a love affair with Pakistan and it’s people.

On Indian Occupied Kashmir

Human rights be fully accepted and must be respected in Indian occupied Kashmir. There are two reports by Human Rights commissioner on Kashmir which fully explains the issue.

On the Kartarpur initiative

A symbol of interfaith harmony, a unique experiment in cross-border ties.

On Pakistan as a refugee host

For 40 years, Pakistan has sheltered Afghan refugees. I urge the world to support host countries and show similar leadership in standing with refugees

On the Indus Water Treaty

Water must be an instrument of peace and not an instrument of conflict.”

To a question on Islamophobia in the world, Guetteres said the notion of someone being an Islamophobe and the general idea of Islamophobia both were detrimental to peace and reconciliation efforts among countries and meddled with interfaith harmony among individuals.

The UN Chief said that a concerted effort was required to tackle Islamophobia and defeat it for good.

Lauding Pakistan’s efforts being the second biggest refugee sanctuary in the world, the UN chief said that Pakistan has embraced refugees from across the world and has proven to be a great partner to the United Nations. He thanked Pakistan for all the efforts it puts forth in the fight for peace and justice.

He added that Pakistan’s magnanimous effort of providing a safe place to Afghan refugees was an admirable feat, one that can’t be appreciated enough.

The UN Secretary General said the UNMOGIP was continually monitoring the ceasefire violations along the Line of Control.

He said the UN was deeply concerned over the tensions between India and Pakistan last year and asked both sides for restraint, as dialogue and diplomacy are the only way to solve the problems.

Antonio Guterres, while appreciating the initiative of construction of Kartarpur Corridor, said it was a symbol of interfaith harmony and will promote peace in the region.

He said Pakistan was a responsible member of the United Nations and it will be fully supported in dispensing its responsibilities.

Hailing the contributions of Pakistan in UN peacekeeping operations around the world, he said Pakistani men and women were serving with full dedication and commitment to promoting the values of the UN.

He said he also discussed with Foreign Minister Qureshi a number of issues, including regional security. 

The UN Secretary-General said Pakistan’s efforts against terrorism were commendable and very successful. He said due to these efforts, now Islamabad has become a safe family station for UN staff.

Speaking on the occasion, Foreign Minister Qureshi said that he and the UN chief had a very important and fruitful meeting on the matter of Kashmir, a land which has illegally been annexed and is being kept under occupation with a presence of 0.9 million armed personnel.

Qureshi said that the United Nations must ensure resolutions passed by the global body pertaining to Kashmir are adhered to and implemented.

On Pakistan’s role in the Afghan Peace Process, FM Qureshi said that Pakistan holds an integral responsibility in the process and will stand by it till the matter reached its amicable end.

Qureshi said: “We had a very fruitful meeting with the UN Secretary-General in which we discussed a host of issues.”

He added: “We have to agree on a time-bound roadmap for repatriation of Afghan refugees, supported by the international community.”

He said Pakistan has always supported peace and reconciliation in Afghanistan as it believes that peace in the neighboring country will improve regional stability.

He said one example of unilateralism was the illegal act of 5th August of last year by India. He said,” We have conveyed to the UNSG about the challenging situation arising out of this unilateral act.”

He said all shades of Kashmiri opinion have rejected that action. “We also discussed increased ceasefire violations after the 5th August?” he added.

Qureshi said more than 200 days had passed since the siege and lockdown of eight million Kashmiris and compromising of fundamental freedoms in the held territory. He said UN Secretary General is the custodian of UN charter and for this responsibility, we have some expectations from him.

He urged the UN Secretary-General to reaffirm the binding nature of UNSC resolutions, besides highlighting the restoration of fundamental rights and freedom of movement and urging India to respect the 2003 ceasefire violations agreement.

The minister said he also asked the UN Chief that there should be freedom of movement of UNMOGIP to fulfill its mandate on the India side, just like it enjoys in the Pakistani area. 

FM Qureshi said he also shared the initiatives of the government on socio-economic welfare with the UNSG, including the Ehsaas program, health facility program and sustainable development goals. He said we had a unanimity of views on climate challenge issues.

He urged the UN Secretary-General to intervene and play his role as the people of Pakistan and Kashmir “are hopeful that the UN Security Council will soon give them legal, legitimate and democratic voting rights.”