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Pakistan has illegally occupied Gilgit, Baltistan, intends to prolong occupation by spreading lies and myths: Activist at UNHRC

JKNAP president Sajjad Raja said, "Vast majority of people of Pakistan occupied Jammu and Kashmir have been against the accession to Pakistan. Jammu and Kashmir is a part of India."

Speaking at an event titled ‘Jammu and Kashmir: Shifting facts from the fiction’ held at Geneva Press Club on the sidelines of the ongoing 43rd session of the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) in Geneva, President of Gilgit Baltistan Studies Senge Sering asserted that, “Pakistan is an occupier, Pakistan wants to prolong the occupation. It is in Gilgit Baltistan of an illegal basis and the only way it can prolong the occupation and abuse of resources is by spreading lies and myths about Jammu and Kashmir and confusing the international community and confusing the local people.”

Syed Tehmeena from the True Voice of Kashmir; Executive Director of South Asia Democratic Forum Paulo Casaca, a Former Member of European Parliament Nathan Gill, an expert from South-Asia from European Commission, Brian Toll, President of Jammu and Kashmir National Awami Party (JKNAP) Sajjad Raja were also present during the meeting.

Speaking to ANI, Sajjad Raja said, “Vast majority of people of Pakistan occupied Jammu and Kashmir have been against the accession to Pakistan. Jammu and Kashmir is a part of India.”

Brian Toll, a former director at European Commission said that Pakistan has been involved with Jammu and Kashmir since the partition in 1947, which has helped tribespeople and non-residents of Jammu and Kashmir to find their place and follow the agenda largely set by Islamabad.

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Brain Toll, supporting the abrogation of 370 in the erstwhile state of Jammu and Kashmir, said that the special status was brought to bring normalcy in the region, but it did not lead to peace and development in the region.

Toll asserted, “Article 370 was introduced to give the state some sort of resemblance of normality. It allows the state to make its own decision on everything except Defence and Foreign affairs.”

He further added, “However, it did not lead to peace and development. Education has been disrupted by strikes and conflict. So the people in the region were facing the problem of no education and no employment, no hope and that is never good for any state. Removing article 370 means resemblance of some sort of normalcy in the region.”

Syed Tehmeena, echoing similar thoughts, said, “Kashmir would be a better place in the future. It is too early to decide. It is only a few months [since the abrogation of 370]. It would be a better place of the investment and further rights given to the woman.”

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Staff reporter at OpIndia

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