ISLAMABAD - Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif is set to take the Kashmir issue to the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) and he consulted the local Kashmiri leadership yesterday in this regard.

The prime minister would lead Pakistan delegation to the 71st Session of the UNGA in New York from September 19. The Annual Session of the international forum has special significance as it is attended by a large number of heads of state and government.

Yesterday, PM Nawaz Sharif visited Muzaffarabad where he told Kashmiri leaders that he would emphatically highlight Kashmir issue at the upcoming UNGA session.

“Islamabad will not ignore the bloodshed in Indian-occupied Kashmir,” he told leaders of All Parties Hurriyat Conference’s AJK chapter in the meeting, which was also attended by AJK President Sardar Masood Khan and Prime Minister Raja Farooq Haider.

An official statement said the PM met with Hurriyat leaders to take them onboard before proceeding to New York where he is due to address the world leaders.

“Pakistan will continue to extend moral, diplomatic and political support to Kashmiris,” Nawaz Sharif was quoted as saying.

Sharif said the atrocities in held Kashmir by occupant forces against Kashmiris had touched extremes. “Oppression is destined to end, and truth will prevail,” he said.

The PM said the Kashmiris’ demand for their right to self-determination was just, which had also been acknowledged by international community.

He called upon the United Nations to fulfill its obligation in accordance with its own resolutions.

Nawaz Sharif said: “The movement of Kashmiris will ultimately succeed as the history has precedents that such movements could not be suppressed with oppression.”

He said Pakistan would raise voice for the resolution of Kashmir dispute at all fora. The APHC leaders thanked the prime minister for taking them into confidence before his visit to UNGA.

At the UNGA, the prime minister will make a policy statement in the General Debate on September 21 to enunciate Pakistan’s position, role and contribution on key international issues ranging from peace and security to development, and highlight the vision and priorities of the government.

He will specifically focus on the current situation particularly the continuing grave violations of human rights by the Indian forces in the Occupied Jammu and Kashmir.

He will call upon the international community and the United Nations to live up to their promise of the right to self-determination of the people of Jammu and Kashmir in accordance with the relevant UN Security Council resolutions.

The prime minister will also participate in the high-level meeting of the General Assembly to address ‘Large Movements of Refugees and Migrants’ on September 19 and the ‘Leaders' Summit on Refugees’ convened by US President Barrack Obama on September 20.

The foreign ministry said Pakistan will avail of these high level meetings to highlight its tremendous contribution to the cause of refugees as the host of the world's largest protracted refugee situation, and urge the international community to devote adequate political attention and support for the voluntary repatriation of Afghan refugees from Pakistan and their sustainable reintegration in Afghanistan.

On the sidelines of the UNGA, the PM will hold bilateral meetings with a number of world leaders, including the UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon. He is also likely to interact with business leaders and select members of the media.

On the margins of the Session, Ministerial level meetings of many regional and sub-regional organizations are also held, including Organisation of Islamic Cooperation, G-77, Economic Cooperation Organisation, South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation, Commonwealth, D-8 and others.  There will also be a meeting of the OIC Contact Group on Jammu and Kashmir.

Pakistan is a great advocate of multilateralism and the United Nations to promote collective responses to the multifaceted challenges of global peace, security and development.

A foreign ministry spokesman said: “We would continue our constructive role and engagement at the UN with a view to protecting and promoting our national interests, including on core issues such as Jammu and Kashmir, reform of the Security Council, counter-terrorism, human rights, peacekeeping, and a host of development and other matters.”