Kashmir Issue Raised at the British House of Lords

London, U.K. October 15, 2010. All Parties Parliamentary Group on Kashmir (APPGK) held a special meeting at the House of Lords to asses the situation in Indian administraed Kashmir. Lord Nazir Ahmed, Member, British House of Lords and the Chairman of the APPGK said that the issue of Kashmir is the issue of self-determination which was guaranteed under successive United Nations Security Council resolutions. And the self-determination of peoples is a basic principle of the United Nations Charter which has been reaffirmed in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and applied countless times to the settlement of many international conflicts.

Lord Ahmed said that India and Pakistan’s nuclear arsenals pose a considerable nuclear threat. However, this possibility will only be reduced if pressure is mounted on India and Pakistan to resolve Kashmir. The Kashmir conflict poses a geopolitical threat because Pakistan’s role in Afghanistan will be hindered, economic ties in the region are likely to remain frail and we cannot idly sit as two nuclear powers fight over Kashmir.

Dr. Fai told the Members that some discerning observers perceive a growing awareness in the Indian middle class that the persistence of the Kashmir problem weakens India by diminishing its stature among the great powers. He quoted Mr. Pankaj Mishra who said on August 14, 2010 that the protesters in Kashmir have a broader mass base than the Green Movement had in Iran. But no colour-coded revolution is heralded in Kashmir by Western commentators. Dr. Fai made the reference of an article written by Arundhati Roy who said on August 22, 2008 that, “Having declared that the militant movement has been crushed, it (India) is now faced with a non-violent mass protests. This one is nourished by people’s memory of years of repression in which tens of thousands have been killed, thousands have disappeared, hundreds of thousands tortured, injured and humiliated.”

Besides the Members of the APPGK, those who attended the meeting included Mr. Nazir Quraishi, the Senior Vice President, World Kashmir Freedom Movement

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