Message from Anwaar-ul-Haq Kakar, Prime Minister of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan on the occasion of 'Kashmir Black Day' (27 October 2023)

Today marks the 76th anniversary of India's occupation of the large parts of Jammu and Kashmir against the will of the local people. On 27 October 1947,India landed its troops in the Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IIOJK) for the first time. It continues to forcibly occupy this territory ever since.

In the last seventy-six years, India has tried different methods to perpetuate its illegal rule on Jammu and Kashmir. However, an intensified campaign to 'Indianize' Kashmir and transform Kashmiris into a disempowered community in their own land has been in full swing since 5 August 2019. The Indian Occupation has taken a number of steps to realize these nefarious goals, including gerrymandering of the electoral constituencies, addition of non-Kashmiris to voter rolls, issuance of domicile certificates to outsiders, and introduction of new laws on ownership of land and property. These undemocratic and illegal measures are in direct contravention of the relevant UN Security Council resolutions and the Fourth Geneva Convention.

Today, the IIOJK remains one of the most militarized regions of the world. The true representatives of the Kashmiri people have been arbitrarily detained for years. Media blackouts and censorship are being extensively imposed to conceal oppression and muzzle dissent.  Thousands of innocent Kashmiri men, women and children have lost their lives at the hands of Indian brutality during the last three decades. India has, however, failed to subjugate the Kashmiri people.

The latest developments in the Middle East have shown that the long-standing disputes should not be allowed to fester. Pushing them under the rug does not guarantee durable peace. Three successive generations of Kashmiris have waited for the world, especially the United Nations, to deliver. The world can no longer eschew its responsibility. It owes it to the Kashmiris. The international community must take practical steps to hold India accountable for its excesses in IIOJK. The Indian Government must reverse the unilateral and illegal actions of 5th August 2019; stop its egregious human rights violations in IIOJK; and implement the relevant UN Security Council resolutions.

Pakistan, as always, stands shoulder-to-shoulder with its Kashmiri brethren. It will continue to extend its full moral, diplomatic and political support to their just struggle for realization of their inalienable right to self-determination.