Pakistan's isolation on Kashmir a huge setback to its foreign policy, says Nadeem Nusrat
Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan has admitted to the failure of his country's stance on Kashmir and its diplomacy, stated Voice of Karachi (VoK) Chairman Nadeem Nusrat on Monday.
"Imran Khan is not more than a puppet of Pakistan's military establishment who talks at the behest of his masters in GHQ (Pakistan Army Headquarter). The Pakistani premier admits that Pakistan has been isolated at the international stage by saying that if some of the Muslim countries are not with us (Pakistan) today due to economic or other reasons, they will be with us in the future," Nusrat said in a press statement.
The Voice of Karachi Chairman further said that Kashmir has been at the forefront of Pakistan's foreign policy since its inception.
"The military establishment of Pakistan and its notorious intelligence agency ISI spent billions of rupees from the national exchequer to create militant organizations, Kashmir committees and Kashmir Desks in their embassies in the name of Kashmir's freedom struggle. The failed domestic and foreign policies of Pakistan headed by the military establishment have turned the country into a chaos-like situation," he said.
Nusrat categorically rejected Imran Khan's claim that it was his government's policy to have peaceful relations with other countries, including India and Afghanistan.
He said that the reality is that the terror outfits involved in deadly attacks in Afghanistan and India are enjoying impunity under the present government of Imran Khan. "The sincerity of Pakistan to have peace with its neighbours can be measured with no change seen in using terror as a tool of its foreign policy and strategic depth in the region," he added.
The Mohajir leader outlined the plight of the minorities in Pakistan including the Mohajirs, Baloch, Pashtun and people of Gilgit Baltistan.
The VoK chairman added that Islamabad has been "violating the basic rights of its ethnic and religious minorities, the superior judiciary has become the tool of military establishment and violation of the constitution by Army generals is a normal routine in the country."
"There are over a hundred million Mohajirs, Balochs, Pashtuns and other ethnic entities who are facing near-genocide at the hands of Pakistani security forces whose majority hails from the country's Punjab Province only," the statement said.
The VoK leader claimed that both Karachi and Mohajirs have been deprived of even the fundamental rights by successive civilian and military governments.
"Pakistan has also systematically disenfranchised Karachi's population through blatant gerrymandering and manipulation in census figures, leaving Karachi with negligible presence in the national and provincial legislatures," he said.
"Those who stand up to this inhuman treatment become the victim of unlawful arrests, brutal torture in custody, enforced disappearances, and even extrajudicial executions. Pakistan's Punjabi-dominated security forces have extrajudicially killed over 25,000 Mohajirs since 1992 in Karachi and other Mohajir-majority cities in Pakistan's Sindh Province," the statement also said.
The horrific state of human rights in Pakistan's largest and most resourceful province, Balochistan, is another source of concern where ethnic Balochs have been demanding greater control over their province's land and resources.
"The state authorities have responded to this demand by carrying out a brutal military operation that very often uses American-supplied F-16 jet fighters. As per accounts of some local Baloch human rights organizations, Pakistani security forces have killed tens of thousands of Balochs in the last few years, and even more, have become the victim of enforced disappearances," the statement said.
"Another sensitive geostrategic region in South Asia is Pakistan's Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Province which shares around 1,500 miles-long border with Afghanistan. Since the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, Pakistani military establishment has turned the KP province into a haven for almost every extremist Islamist group in the world. Pakistani intelligence officials and religious clerics have recruited and trained hundreds of thousands of young Pashtuns from this impoverished region in the last few decades and shipped them to wage jihad in almost every part of the world. The Taliban was also conceived in a religious seminary in KP," the statement pointed out.
The KP Province has been facing a brutal military crackdown for years, which has left millions of people displaced, Nusrat added. Those indigenous secular forces who have dared to stand up to Pakistan's Punjabi-dominated military are facing unlawful imprisonment, false charges, and enforced disappearances, he said.
The disputed territories of Gilgit and Baltistan are facing similar levels of persecution where the Pakistani military officials are trying to change the demography by turning the indigenous population into a minority. Those standing up to this tyranny face enforced disappearances or unlawful imprisonment," the statement said.
"Siege and search operations, unlawful arrests, denial of the universal right of due process, curb on media, freedom of expression and association, enforced disappearances, and extrajudicial executions are a routine in Karachi, Balochistan, KP, and Gilgit-Baltistan. Persistent denial of human rights in all these territories is brewing a profound sense of deprivation which could turn into a serious law and order crisis," the statement also read.
"The world must ask every Pakistani leader raising Kashmir issue: Is Pakistan willing to stop its state-sponsored terrorism against non-Punjabi ethnic groups and grant them greater autonomy? Until Pakistan treats its own religious and ethnic entities with dignity and rights they ethically and lawfully deserve, it has no moral ground to plead the Kashmir issue anywhere in the world," the VoK chairman reiterated.
The Mohajir leader further said that the world community must take serious notice of the continuous threats of nuclear war coming from Pakistan's civilian and military leadership. The immature statements and warmongering would further escalate the tensions between the two nuclear-armed neighbours.
He said that both India and Pakistan should start the dialogue process without any delay to resolve all the outstanding issues between the two countries.
"Kashmir, however, is not the only burning issue in the region. Without resolving the longstanding grievances non-Punjabi ethnic groups are facing in Pakistan, peace and stability will remain an elusive goal in South Asia," Nusrat said.