By Muhammad Luqman
Pakistan’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations Dr. Maleeha Lodhi has said that India is the mother of terrorism in South Asia.
In her response to the allegations of terrorism levelled against Pakistan by India’s External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj in her address at the UN General Assembly session in New York, Lodhi said India is using terrorism as a state policy, according to media reports.
Exercising the right of reply to an earlier speech, Lodhi accused Swaraj of “indulging in an orgy of slander against Pakistan.”
On Saturday, Sushma Swaraj in her address accused Islamabad of terrorism. In her diatribe, she had said, “Pakistan is recognised only as the pre-eminent export factory for terror.”
“Her comments towards my country betray the hostility that the Indian leadership has towards Pakistan —the hostility we have endured for 70 years,” Ambassador Lodhi told the 72nd UNGA.
“Indian spy Kulbhushan Yadav has confessed of committing terrorism in Pakistan,” Lodhi said.
“Repeating falsehoods year after year does not and cannot conceal or alter the truth. But in her vitriol she deliberately ignored the core issue of Jammu and Kashmir.”
Lodhi noted Jammu and Kashmir was not a part of India and was recognised by the United Nations and the international community as ‘disputed” territory’. “I invite all of you, and the Indian FM, to look at the UN maps,” she said.
The Pakistani diplomat said that India’s military occupation of the State was illegal as the UN Security Council had, in over a dozen resolutions, decided that the dispute must be resolved by enabling the people of Jammu and Kashmir to determine their own destiny through a UN-supervised plebiscite.
India has been levelling allegations against Pakistan to divert international attention from the brutalities of Indian forces in held Kashmir, she said. The crimes against humanity in held Kashmir should be investigated.
She also urged the international community to stop India from ceasefire violations on the Line of Control. Pakistan wants a resolution of all outstanding issues through talks, she said, adding that India will have to give up the policy of terrorism.
Lodhi recalled that India’s brutal occupation of Kashmir has killed over 100,000 innocent Kashmiris. Although India had launched a campaign of brutality inside Kashmir — including the shooting and blinding of innocent Kashmiri children with pellet guns — and yet had failed to subdue these Kashmiri children, women and youth who came out on the streets almost daily to demand that India get out of occupied Kashmir.
“India cannot hide behind semantics. Any interstate dispute, like Kashmir, is by definition an ‘international’ dispute. If the parties fail to resolve a dispute, the UN and the international community has not only the right but the obligation to intervene and help to resolve the dispute,” she said.
As a pre-condition for a fruitful dialogue, she said that India will have to shun the policy of terrorism and supporting terrorism in Pakistan.