Islamabad: The killing of Hizbul commander Burhan Wani was a “turning point” for Kashmir, Pakistan’s top diplomat on Saturday claimed as he termed the ensuing violence in the Valley an “indigenous youth-led movement” triggered by India’s “misguided efforts” to change the state’s demography.
Pakistan Prime Minister’s Adviser on Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz said this at an event to mark the ‘Kashmir Solidarity Day’ observed annually on February 5.
Aziz claimed that the violence following the killing of Wani on July 8 by Indian security forces led to the several deaths and many were blinded either completely or partially.
“This brutality, which has continued unabated in the past 7 months, has not however dampened the resolve of Kashmiri youth to secure their right of self-determination,” Aziz said, according to a statement by Pakistan’s Foreign Ministry.
Another important factor, Aziz claimed, after Wani’s death was the “total rejection of the Indian narrative by the international community” that Kashmir was an integral part of India.
Following the death of Wani, Kashmir witnessed protests and chaos last year. The situation normalised towards the end of last year.
Aziz also said: “The whole world now acknowledges that this is an indigenous youth-led movement which has become stronger because of the Indian government’s misguided efforts to change the demographic composition of the state and its insensitivity to the rights of minority communities in India.”
He said several countries have debated this issue and human rights organisations in Europe and North America have been mobilising public support to “force” India to resume dialogue with Pakistan to find an acceptable “solution to the longstanding dispute, still on the UN agenda.” He accused India of “desperately trying to divert the attention” of the global community from the situation in
Kashmir by “intensifying” cross-border firing along the Line of Control and “pretending” to be a victim of terrorism from Pakistan.