Hold plebiscite in Kashmir, says Sharif

Hold plebiscite in Kashmir, says Sharif

Islamabad, July 11 (IANS) Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on Monday called for a plebiscite in “occupied” Jammu and Kashmir to let its people decide if they want to be with India or align with Pakistan.

In a statement, Sharif also voiced “concern and deep sorrow” over the killing of Hizbul Mujahideen commander Burhan Wani on Friday by security forces that has triggered widespread violence in the Kashmir Valley.

Radio Pakistan quoted Sharif as saying in a statement that the “massacre of citizens by Indian forces and use of brutal force against Kashmir is regrettable”.

He urged India to respect the human rights in “occupied Kashmir” — a Pakistani euphemism for Jammu and Kashmir.

Sharif said “unarmed Kashmiris cannot be deterred from their rightful struggle for self determination at gunpoint” and that the right to self determination was justified by UN resolutions.

He urged India to fulfil its commitment to hold a plebiscite in Jammu and Kashmir “to ascertain the will of the people for the future alignment with either Pakistan or India”.

Sharif also expressed concern over the continued house arrest of Kashmiri separatist leaders.

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