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Sunday, June 25, 2017
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Baltimore, Maryland. April 17, 2017. Dr. Ghulam Nabi Fai, Secretary General of ‘World Kashmir Awareness Forum’ voiced his continuing belief that the conflict over Kashmir cannot be resolved through military means. Kashmir is a political issue and has to be resolved through political means by involving all parties to the conflict – the Governments of India & Pakistan and the legitimate leadership of the Kashmiri resistance. He was speaking on the subject of Kashmir at the 42nd Annual Convention of ‘Islamic Circle of North America’ at Baltimore Convention Center. More than 20,000 people participated in this year’s convention. Other panelists included: Mr. Adem Carroll, Dr. M. A. Dhar, Dr. Nakibur Rahman and Bro. Tariq Rehman.

The issue of ‘universal development agenda’ is the issue of the twenty-first century. Never before have so many suffered amidst liberty and luxury for the few. The wealth of single individuals exceeds the wealth of many nations. In highly developed countries, the number of persons living past 80 years is soaring. In deprived and convulsed countries, the average longevity is but half that age. While citizens of some African and Asian countries are starving, the rich countries are beset with obesity. Discrepancies of these types are morally disturbing. The United Nations is ideally suited to ending these shocking inequalities because it hosts all the nations of the world and endows each with identical voting power in the General Assembly. The poorest and the weakest are equal to the richest and the strongest.

Friday, 23 September 2016 23:02

Kashmir: Where the Truth Doesn’t Matter

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NPR’s Julie McCarthy was in Kashmir earlier in September and reported on how different the unrest seems now compared to previous years. “First of all, there's this unprecedented kind of force being used. There's these high-velocity pellet shotguns for crowd control. And it's left thousands of people riddled with pellet injuries. And a lot of them have damaged eyesight. And some demonstrators have thrown stones, attacked police stations and government buildings. And, unusually, this started in rural areas. And it has spread throughout the Kashmir Valley. And it's lasted over 60 days. That's also unusual.”

Perhaps it’s not enough to point out that the champion of this latest uprising, a person who was slain in a fashion frequently called “extrajudicial” by others in the press, and whose killing was the primary provocation for the current uprising, was a self-declared militant who had used social media to resist the Indian occupation. He was someone who had become a symbol of the true spirit of resistance in the hearts of all Kashmiris.

Wednesday, 30 March 2016 00:00

Kashmir and the Nuclear Threat

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The best way to solve any problem is to remove its cause.” Martin Luther King

"Nuclear weapons are the scourge of the earth; to mine for them, manufacture them, deploy them, use them, is a curse against God, the human family, and the earth itself." Philip Berrigan, American Peace Activist.

The nuclear age has placed in the world’s lap a growing and complex set of threats that create the possibility of an all-out holocaust in some part of the world almost every day. We now have North Korea threatening Seoul, testing intercontinental ballistic missiles and bragging about hydrogen bombs. Few people know that the Korean War has never ended. The Armistice Agreement was just a ceasefire. No formal treaty was ever signed. Then there’s NATO playing war games at Russia’s borders, with generals talking about taking back Crimea. And let’s not forget Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu who has threatened to attack Iran unilaterally if no one else does it. But in South Asia, the mainstream media seems to overlook frequently a continuous and ongoing threat of another kind.

The people of Jammu & Kashmir on both sides of the Cease-fire line and worldwide observed the 69th anniversary of India’s Independence Day as a black day because of India’s failure to honor its pledges that  it has given to the people of Jammu & Kashmir at the United Nations. This year, the All Parties Hurriyet Conference (APHC) had summoned all Kashmiris all over the world to demonstrate on August 15th, as a symbol of their unity and harmony. Their unity in mourning demonstrated their will to resist India's illegal occupation and defiance of the United Nations Security Council resolutions mandating a self-determination plebiscite for the 18 million people of Jammu & Kashmir.

Springfield, Virginia. May 9 2015. “The United States Administration should persuade both India and Pakistan to settle the Kashmir conflict through tripartite and purposeful dialogue.” This was stated by the former Prime Minister of Azad Jammu and Kashmir and Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf leader, Barrister Sultan Mehmood Chaudhry, while addressing a public gathering in Washington, D.C. He emphasized that  Kashmir  is the flash point between the two nuclear countries of India and Pakistan which deserves the attention of the world powers.

Wednesday, 25 March 2015 11:11

Kashmir: Urgency in dialogue process

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"All of us remain concerned that the issue of Jammu and Kashmir should be solved through peaceful negotiations and should be willing to lend all the strength we have to the resolution of this matter." President Nelson Mandela at the NAM Summit – September 2, 1998

In matters of international conflict resolution, that can only imply the involvement of a third party mediator or facilitator. If Ashok and Ahmad can't put Humpty Dumpty back together because they can't agree on where the pieces go, then Sam, a specialist in eggshell reconstruction, should be called upon in order for differences to be resolved. Most importantly, without a third party's impartial diligence in pursuing a settlement, breakdowns in lines of communication or other disputes that may arise will inevitably create barriers to resolution, and the process will fail. The side in the dispute which offers initiatives will always be seen as weak when both are out rattling their sabres; hence no progress can be made.

"Let us remember here that the future of Jammu and Kashmir is not something that the governments of India and Pakistan can decide without involving the Kashmiri people. How this diverse people's representatives should be identified, and then associated with the process toward a possible settlement, are crucial if difficult questions, but every human and democratic principle demands this association." Professor Rajmohan Gandhi, grandson of Mahatma Gandhi, July 24, 2003.

Ultimately the referendum in Scotland was held in a peaceful manner, and the people decided according to their own free will not to be an independent nation. This was undoubtedly a victory for democratic principles and universal values. The people of Kashmir do not want anything more than that. They want the same principle to be equally applicable to Kashmir. Let the people decide.
It is nothing less than astounding that intelligent men who are charged with the responsibility of leading a country cannot comprehend that spending billions of dollars to maintain possession of a very small disputed territory to its north with millions of troops at the expense of their own national quality of life makes any sense at all. While millions of Indians don't even have a toilet (As Prime Minister Modi said, “My real thought is to first have toilets and then temples”)and live in squalor in cardboard shelters, the government feeds off their meager incomes in order to possess and control a nation that itself is kept in a dire state economically and cannot possibly pay any return on such an investment.
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