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No Room for Terrorism in Kashmiri Struggle for Freedom: AJK PM

Raja Farooq Haider, Prime Minister of Azad Jammu & Kashmir, stressed that the Kashmiri struggle for freedom is not associated with terrorism, and remains the longest standing peaceful struggle against a brutal Indian occupation.

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News Desk |

Raja Muhammad Farooq Haider, Prime Minister of Azad Jammu & Kashmir, has said that Pakistan and Azad Jammu & Kashmir will not allow India to malign the Kashmiri struggle for freedom and self-determination by associating it with terrorism.

Addressing a media briefing at the Pakistan Embassy in Washington, Farooq Haider said, “We will remain alert and undermine India’s bid to link the Kashmiri struggle with terrorism. There is no room for terrorism in our peaceful struggle for freedom.”

Media reports reveal that a senior US official indicated at a recent press briefing that Washington has realized Pakistan’s diplomatic and political support for the people of Kashmir; however, Islamabad must undermine militants from “taking advantage of the situation.”

Farooq Haider rubbished Indian allegations of cross-border Kashmiri terrorism, and highlighted the “peaceful struggle” that has dominated the Himalayan region in the quest for freedom.

The official said, as cited by Dawn, “It’s all the more important that Pakistan demonstrate its resolve to halt cross-border terrorism.”

No Room for Terrorism in Kashmir 

AJK Prime Minister Raja Farooq Haider, who is visiting Washington to meet with US officials, US think tanks, and the Pakistani and Kashmiri diaspora, highlighted the ongoing situation in Indian-occupied Kashmir and stressed upon the need to support the peaceful and longstanding struggle for self-determination led by the people of Kashmir.

Raja Farooq Haider said, “We have a higher moral ground as the Indian troops are committing unprecedented violations against the people of Kashmir. The AJK Prime Minister noted that employing violent tactics would only malign the Kashmir struggle for freedom, and “we don’t want that” because it would put the Kashmiris and Indians in the same light.

The AJK Prime Minister stressed, “We will guard our boards and make sure no terrorism penetrates through our borders-we will not allow it to happen”. Farooq Haider rubbished Indian allegations of cross-border Kashmiri terrorism, and highlighted the “peaceful struggle” that has dominated the Himalayan region in the quest for freedom.

Read more: Modi tries to defend Kashmir move, uses “Terrorism” as an Excuse

He said, “We are on a higher moral ground. There is no room for terrorism in our freedom struggle.” Farooq Haider noted that in the past, the Kashmiris have been maligned as terrorists because they fought against forceful occupiers and oppressors.

Referring to Indian accusations of terrorism levelled against the Kashmiris defending their right to self-determination, Farooq Haider noted that we have been unjustly mislabeled in the past. The AJP Premier said, “Why would we allow ourselves to be mislabeled again, to be regarded as terrorists? “

No Alternative to Peaceful Freedom Struggle 

Raja Farooq Haider stressed that moving forward the Kashmiris cannot envision an alternative to a peaceful struggle for freedom. He highlighted that the Kashmiris have put forward a non-violent resistance against a brutal and barbaric Indian occupation.

He said, “There is no alternative more effective than a peaceful struggle for freedom. Either we will die or gain liberty from the Indian occupied”. Farooq Haider stressed that the Kashmiris are a peaceful community and do not believe in countering Indian violence with more violence.

The AJK Prime Minister Raja Farooq Haider, also called upon the Trump administration to convene a meeting between India and Pakistan, and play a constructive role in de-escalating tensions between the two nuclear-armed rivals.

Responding to a question on the sentiments of the people in Kashmir, and how they will react to the abolishment of Article 370 once the curfew is lifted, the AJK Prime Minister said, “The entire international community will witness their anger. The longer the curfew, the angrier the Kashmiris will get.”

The AJK Prime Minister lamented that innocent Kashmiris have been forced to live in a “virtual prison” for almost four weeks now. He said, “The occupied valley is the world’s largest prison, where eight to 8.5 million Kashmiris are held hostage. All communication mediums have been eliminated. People are unable to communicate with their family members.”

Mr. Farooq Haider said, “Even neighbors cannot interact with their neighbors.” He stressed that the inhumane conditions exercised in Indian occupied Kashmir are worse than that of an actual prison. Responding to the suggestion that Pakistan is initiating the talk of war, Haider disagreed with the notion.

He said, “Pakistan is merely saying that if India attacks Azad Jammu & Kashmir, Pakistan will utilize all its might and resources to defend the territory. Pakistan has the right to defend AJK.” Farooq Haider said that people of both sides of Kashmir are in favor of Pakistan and they will joint Pakistan in any fight against Indian aggression or misadventures.

Addressing the same gathering at the Pakistan Embassy in Washington, Pakistan’s Ambassador to the US, Asad Majeed Khan highlighted that the US President Donald Trump has exhibited an interest in mediating on the Kashmir issue.

Read more: Islam has no connection with terrorism: Imran Khan

Khan noted that Donald Trump has reiterated his offer to mediate and resolve the Kashmir dispute time and again, during the 2016 US Presidential election, and later during his meeting with Prime Minister Imran Khan on 22nd July.

The AJK Prime Minister Raja Farooq Haider, also called upon the Trump administration to convene a meeting between India and Pakistan, and play a constructive role in de-escalating tensions between the two nuclear-armed rivals.