“The (Kashmir) dispute has reached its worst point. There are gross and systematic human rights violations happening every day (in IOK),” said Sardar Masood Khan, President Azad Jammu and Kashmir, in a recent interview to FOX News’ Hollie Mckay.
FOX News has said that the gang rape and murder of eight-year-old Asifa Bano in Indian Occupied Kashmir earlier this year has cast an uneasy spotlight on India’s horrific and often underreported abuses in the “long-running territorial battle” between India and Pakistan.
Fox said that among the numerous gang rapes and murders that have become a routine affair in the Indian Occupied Kashmir, the cold-blooded gang rape and murder of Asifa Bano – belonging to the nomadic Bakarwaal tribe – has drawn international media attention. According to investigators, Asifa was drugged and raped for days inside the confines of a local temple, before being mercilessly strangled and stoned to death. Her family have claimed they were met with protests and violent threats from Hindu activists in the region even in their distraught efforts to bury Bano.
“These (tactics) are designed to crush the will of the Kashmiri people”, President Masood Khan said.
Giving a rejoinder to President Khan’s remarks, Syed Akbaruddin, India’s Permanent Representative to the UN, told FOX TV that Kashmir was a bilateral issue between both Pakistan and India; and added that the UN has not addressed any India-Pakistan issue nor does it see any need and interest to change that.
President Masood said this a false contention because the Kashmir issue is renewed every year on the UN agenda and the UN cannot simply divest itself from ownership of this issue. “UN cannot be inactive. If the conflict continues to escalate, there is a huge cause for concern. If nukes are used, it will be Armageddon”, said President Azad Kashmir.
Akbaruddin also alleged that India is fighting terrorists in IOK, who draw sustenance from the territory across the Line of Control.
President Masood Khan strongly rejected the allegation as utter falsehood, saying that Indian Occupation Forces were, in fact, mowing down unarmed civilians who were demanding their freedom and right to self-determination.
“There have been no unauthorized crossings from Azad Kashmir to IOK in the past many years”, reiterated the President. He said that India’s very own security officials have acknowledged the fact that the number of indigenous militants in IOK has gone down drastically and the heavily guarded and surveilled border between Azad Kashmir and IOK is impregnable.