India’s External Affairs Ministry on Friday criticised the stands taken by Turkey and Malaysia on the Kashmir matter, calling them “biased”, PTI reported. Turkey and Malaysia had criticised India after New Delhi revoked the special status of Jammu and Kashmir under Article 370 of the Constitution and imposed a curfew on August 5.
Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan had said at the United Nations General Assembly last week that only dialogue can solve the Kashmir problem, which he said has been awaiting a solution for 72 years, Daily Sabah reported. “In order for the Kashmiri people to look at a safe future together with their Pakistani and Indian neighbours, it is imperative to solve the problem through dialogue and on the basis of justice and equity, but not through collision,” Erdogan had said.
Ministry of External Affairs Spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said Turkey should get a proper understanding of the situation in Jammu and Kashmir before making any further statements, ANI reported. “It is a matter which is completely internal to India,” he said.
Malaysian President Mahathir Mohammad had been more forthright, claiming that India had “invaded and occupied” Kashmir despite several United Nations resolutions calling it a disputed territory. “Ignoring the UN would lead to other forms of disregard for the United Nations and the rule of law,” he added.
“Jammu and Kashmir signed the Instrument of Accession [to India] like all other princely states [in 1947],” Kumar said. “Pakistan invaded and illegally occupied parts of Jammu and Kashmir. “Government of Malaysia should bear in mind the friendly relations between the two countries and desist from making such remarks.”
Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan had asked political parties in the country last month to organise a march to the Line of Control to protest against Indian actions in Kashmir. In response, Kumar said on Friday that Khan had used provocative and irresponsible language at the UN General Assembly too. “I think he doesn’t know how to conduct international relationships,” Kumar said. “Most serious thing is he gave an open call for jihad against India, which is not normal.”
Kumar was referring to Khan’s statement last week describing the act of supporting Kashmiris as jihad, which, he said, he and his country were doing because they wanted to make Allah happy. Jihad is an Arabic word that literally means a struggle for a noble cause.
“This is not the first time that such statements have come from Pakistan,” Kumar said according to PTI. “Pakistan’s prime minister holds a high constitutional office. He has given such statements even before.”
“We have been saying that Pakistan and its leaders should a behave like a normal neighbouring country,” the Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson said. “They usually do not do that. We don’t expect that but sometimes we do that since we are neighbours. As far as their call of violating some other country’s territorial integrity is concerned, it does not behove the office he holds.”
Kumar also dismissed Pakistan’s claim that 58 countries have backed its stand on Kashmir, saying Islamabad has not been able to produce the list. “Sometimes they kind of make up the number which they did,” he said. “When people are asking them to show the list, they do not have it.”
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