Paradoxes in Pakistan’s Human Rights Case for Kashmir

After the demise of the Cold War, regional and internal conflicts had the chance to come on the international theatre. Their nature was not merely confined to the ideological context but had strong affiliations to their political, economic, geographical, cultural and historical outlooks. Following the abrupt emergence of internal issues, security problems exacerbated the international concerns that persuaded states to ascribe new threats to their integrity and led to overwhelming execution of authoritative actions. The world sadly witnessed the Bosnian genocide, Rwandan genocide, discriminatory atrocities in Iraq, Palestine, Kashmir and in various parts of the world in all magnitudes. The United Nations and various international and regional organisations raised their voices to oppose these events, but later the terror attack of 9/11 provided legitimacy to state sponsored outrages against human rights. These developments together resulted in the eventual breakdown of the whole international legal regime.

Presently, reports on the Syrian civil war and Xinjiang triggered substantial reaction of world community on human rights violations that indicates positive reaffirmation of its significance in international arena. Despite all poorer developments regarding declining of legal regimes, it is fortunate that the world community firmly believes in denial of human rights abuses. Following the repercussions of the Syrian civil war, the Kurds emerged as a well organized western ally in convoluted scenario of Middle East who not only defeated Islamic State of Iraq and Levant but also seized complete control over the North East part of Syria, a de facto autonomous region known as Rojava.

The Kurdish victory jeopardized integrity of Turkey, as their strength supposed to cause unrest in eleven Kurdish majority Turk provinces intact with Turkish-Syrian border. Hence, the populist leader Tayyip Erdogan gained a validation of protecting territorial integrity to disrupt human rights of Kurds. World community responded in robust expressions against unilateral measure of Turkey as this armed expedition revamped catastrophe of human rights abuses. On October 14, EU issued a press release condemning Turkey’s unilateral military action in north east Syria which causes unacceptable human suffering. Before that, USA wrote a letter to Erdogan emphasizing him to keep away from any military adventure in Syrian border area.

Canada and ten countries of Europe imposed sanctions on Turkey. The Arab League categorically condemned the military excursion. Assad thanked India for supporting Syria in cross border assault of Turkey. Meanwhile, Pakistani Premier Imran Khan telephoned Erdogan and assured his support in his war against Kurds. He characterized it as a security threat to Turkey as to Pakistan in war against terrorism.

Turkey’s stringent measures against victorious Kurds will have a direct impact on Pakistan’s diplomatic footings as well. Pakistan is fighting the Kashmir case on the basis of atrocities of human rights, committed by the Indian government. From informal meeting of UN Security Council convened in August to the formal annual meeting of General Assembly convened in September, Pakistan aggressively glorified brutalities in Kashmir and warned the world that uninterrupted continuity in state sponsored human rights violations in Indian occupied Kashmir would certainly lead to genocide. However, after recently assured support to Turkey, some analysts question how is it possible for Pakistan to condemn India on abuses of human rights in Kashmir and support military intervention by Turkey in border areas of Syria.

Moreover, at the same time Pakistan is one of the leading states to oppose any measure urging on China to make sure appropriate arrangements in Xinjiang regarding human rights sufferings of Uyghur ethnicity. Pakistan was a part of 54 countries who dismissed a British tabled resolution on Xinjiang in the committee session of UN General assembly on the end of previous month. Previously in the mid of July of this year, Pakistan with 34 other countries came out in china’s defence in the United Nations, after envoys from 22 nations sharply criticized Beijing’s for the mass detention of Uighur Muslims in the restive Xinjiang province, media reports.

Regrettably Pakistan’s diplomatic support of Turkey and China in human rights concerns will cost its efforts in Kashmir. The experts of international affairs believe that this diplomatic interruption is the outcome of the argument in which Pakistan emphasised the need to resolve the Kashmir case under the auspices of human rights values rather than in the light of her principle stance of the Security Council resolutions.

The case of human rights violation undeniably exists in Kashmir but attempt to replace it with the political footings will rescind its magnitude. Kashmir is widely accepted a politically disputed territory, repeatedly affirmed in various international forums. It seems inappropriate approach to embark on an already established political case on human rights grounds. The corollary is evident in the fact that no country, except Turkey and China, assures her enthusiastic support on human rights abuses in Kashmir issue even that more than hundred days passed under curfew.

The experts conclude that Pakistan must not deviate from her principal stance on disputed territory of Kashmir. Currently, populism is redefining international regimes surfacing state interests on non-ideological standings evident in the policies of major powers. in this situation, almost every developing nation is facing challenges of human rights abuses in all extents. Pakistan is below than top hundred states in human rights record that makes it vulnerable to raise objection on her own stature that provides Critics counter argument to destroy her new ambitions for glorification of the Kashmir case Instead, priorities should remain at its place which are UN resolutions on Kashmir.

The writer, Sanaullah Bhatti, works in a government department and is a student of international relations. His views are exclusively his own and are not shared by PIIA. 

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Filed under China, Discussion, Human Rights, India, Kashmir, Pakistan, Politics, Turkey

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