International Kashmir Conference Birmingham (UK)

The conference held in Birmingham on the 29 th May was organised and facilitated by the JK International People’s Alliance which seeks to protect the interests of the people of Jumma Kashmir and to discuss the implications on the China Pakistan Economic Corridor, which will have an impact on the lives of the people living in the former Princely State of Jammu and
Kashmir.The below Resolutions were passed at the conference which was attended by leaders from all leading Kashmiri parties, scholars, Councillors and prominent members of Kashmiri and Pakistani Civil Society. This Conference unanimously agreed the following for implementation:
1. Declare that Former Princely State of Jammu Kashmir is one political entity; and the entire State, which includes areas of Gilgit Baltistan, so called Azad Kashmir, Jammu, Valley of Kashmir and Ladakh is disputed; and future of the entire former State is yet to be determined;
2. Acknowledge Pakistan’s right to development, hence do not oppose construction of the CPEC, however, we strongly feel that people of Gilgit Baltistan should also benefit from this mega project and they should be part of the decision making;
3. Request the relevant authorities to formulate policies that will empower people of Gilgit Baltistan, develop their educational, professional, and technical skills; and build infrastructure in such a way that people of Baltistan and Azad Kashmir could also benefit from the CPEC;
4. Urge both India and Pakistan to make serious efforts to resolve the Kashmir dispute in accordance with the aspirations of the people of Jammu and Kashmir State; and that will start a new era of friendship and cooperation which will bring economic prosperity and stability to the region;
5. Emphasis that State Subject Ordinance gives identity to all citizens of former Princely State of Jammu and Kashmir. It is regrettable that Pakistan has over the years violated this law in Gilgit Baltistan which has created serious social, economic and political problems because of migration of Pakistanis in to the region. We urge the government of Pakistan to respect State Subject laws and ensure that all non – local people settled here are repatriated;
6. Concerned about the denial of civil, political, economic and social rights to the people of Gilgit Baltistan and Pakistan Administered Kashmir; and emphasis that in order to promote development, urgent attention must be given to the promotion and protection of fundamental human rights as enshrined in the UN Charter;
7. Demand that treason charges against political prisoners must be dropped and all such prisoners, including Baba Jan must be released without any delay.
8. Call upon both China and Pakistan that the CPEC is being built through a disputed territory, therefore, a provision should be incorporated in the agreement that future government of the former Princely State of Jammu and Kashmir should have a right to negotiate new terms with the respective governments of China and Pakistan. END
Reported by: SM Irfan Tahir
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