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UN Security Council First Meeting on Kashmir, Envoys Fail to Agree on a Statement

For the first time since 1965, the UN Security Council (UNSC) held a meeting exclusively on occupied Jammu and Kashmir on Friday, nullifying India’s claim that this was an internal matter.

According to a UN diplomat, council members failed to even come up with a statement to the press — the lowest level of Council action

Although the council did not agree on a statement, China’s UN Ambassador Zhang Jun summed up the discussions, expressing serious concern over the situation.

Ambassador Zhang also warned that India’s move to amend Kashmir’s constitutional status was “causing tensions in the region, China is deeply concerned and opposes any unilateral decisions”.

The Chinese envoy pointed out that “India’s action has also challenged China’s sovereign interests and violated bilateral agreement”.

Further, Pakistan’s Ambassador Maleeha Lodhi said the meeting brought the Kashmir dispute back to the world’s most influential panel and also highlighted the atrocities Indian troops were committing in the occupied territory.

“They are not alone, their voices have been heard. Their plight. Their hardships. Their pain. Their suffering. The occupation, and the consequences of that occupation has been heard.”

Lodhi said that Pakistan is ready for a peaceful settlement to the dispute.

While, India’s UN representative, however, lambasted international involvement in the issue, saying that it was an internal affair.

The members urged India and Pakistan to avoid actions that would escalate the situation along the Line of Control and to settle the dispute through peaceful manner, including through direct dialogue, based on related bilateral agreements in accordance with the UN Charter.

UN diplomats said countries disagreed on wording of a statement, with some fearing any comment would escalate tensions or would show bias towards Pakistan by simply holding the meeting.
France, Germany and the United States objected to language that might have broadened the issue beyond the possibility of future bilateral talks between India and Pakistan, said the diplomat.

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