Pakistan slams Indian PM’s ‘staged’ visit to IIOJK

Pakistan on Sunday rejected Prime Minister Narendra Modi's visit to Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IIOJK), terming it yet another ploy to project fake ‘normalcy’ in the occupied territory. In a statement, the Foreign Office said that since August 5, 2019 the international community had witnessed many such desperate attempts by New Delhi to divert attention from the actual underlying issues in IIOJK. These, it added, include state-sponsored terrorism as well as widespread violations of human rights and international humanitarian law. "It is not surprising, therefore, that while the Indian prime minister was on his brief visit to Jammu under a heavy security cover, the people of IIOJK were observing a ‘black day’ as an expression of their rejection of India’s mischief and illegal policies," it said. Also read: Modi holds first public event in IIOJK since clampdown The Foreign Office also strongly condemned the laying of foundation stones for the construction of the Rattle and Kwar Hydroelectric Projects (HEP) on Chenab River in the occupied valley. It highlighted that the construction of Rattle hydroelectric plant, as designed by India, had been disputed by Pakistan, and for Kwar Hydroelectric Plant India had so far not fulfilled its treaty obligation of sharing information with Pakistan. "Pakistan views such laying of foundation stones of the two projects by the Indian Prime Minister as a direct contravention of the Indus Waters Treaty of 1960 and calls upon India to fulfil its obligations under the IWT [Indus Water Treaty] and refrain from taking any such steps which are detrimental to the IWT framework," it added. The Foreign Office termed it a mockery that the BJP-RSS regime, which is relentlessly pursuing its avowed ideological mission to politically and economically disempower and dispossess the Kashmiris, seeks to project itself before the world as a champion of development in the occupied territory. Also read: Strike observed in IIOJK ahead of Modi's visit Pakistan, it further said, saluted the Kashmiris who remained undaunted in their determination to stand against India’s oppressive occupation. Concluding, it said: "Pakistan will continue to extend all possible support to the Kashmiris in their just struggle for the right to self-determination as pledged to them by the UN Security Council in its numerous resolutions." Narendra Modi's Hindu nationalist government has sought to quell a long-running resistance in the Himalayan occupied territory and strengthen its hold over the Muslim-majority region. India nullified the area's limited autonomy in August 2019, when authorities arrested thousands and imposed the world's longest internet shutdown, seeking to forestall local opposition to the move.

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