WASHINGTON: The Kashmir Diaspora Coalition (KDC) and its six international affiliate advocacy organizations Sunday called on the leaders of Group of 20, an economic cooperation bloc comprising 19 industrialized countries and the European Union, not to participate in the group’s meetings in Indian occupied Kashmir, an internationally recognized disputed territory.
“We hope that in light of the territory’s disputed status, you will conduct a comprehensive assessment of the situation and encourage the Government of India to change the summit’s location, or not participate,” said a joint letter written by KDA, along with World Kashmir Awareness Forum, Washington, DC; Kashmir House Istanbul; Kashmir Civitas, Canada; World Kashmir Freedom Movement, London; Tehreek-Kashmir, UK and EU and Kashmir Campaign Global, London.
India assumed the Presidency of G-20 for 2023 from Indonesia on December 1, 2022.
The letter was released by Dr Ghulam N. Mir, Chairman of the Kashmir Diaspora Coalition and President of the World Kashmir Awareness Forum, Washington, D.C.
It said India’s move to hold G-20 meetings in Srinagar was aimed at diverting global attention from the core issue of the occupation of a people and undermined the legitimacy of the Kashmiris’ demand for a plebiscite in accordance with United Nations Security Council (UNSC) resolutions.
It said, “The current Indian government, as you are aware, is led by a fascist, majoritarian and supremacist organization that has been implicated in several crimes against humanity. Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch and the United Nations have all condemned Hindutva fascism and the consequent lynching of Muslims, Christians, Dalits and Sikhs.”
“Moreover, this Indian government has unilaterally and unlawfully revoked the special autonomous status of the disputed territory of Jammu and Kashmir in 2019. That revocation is a flagrant violation of international law and several UNSC resolutions. Worse, India has arrested human rights defenders, such as Khurram Pervez and numerous journalists for merely documenting the aforesaid crimes and daily indignities that Kashmiris endure.”
“Would you support the normalization of a radical fascist ideology that is premised on inequality and an abhorrence of freedom? “
The letter called on the G-20 leaders not to participate in the “false manufacture of normalcy by lending credibility to an aggressive state that commits human rights violations, unlawful arrests and persecution”.
“Indeed,” it said, “the people of the disputed territory trust that you will not permit the settler-colonial Indian state to use the G-20 Summit to project its baseless narrative of normalcy without addressing the concerns, desires, and aspirations of the Kashmiri people.”
“Having G20 meeting in Kashmir is akin to a situation in the past if any nation could conduct business with the apartheid government of South Africa.”
“We hope that in light of the territory’s disputed status, you will conduct a comprehensive assessment of the situation and encourage the Government of India to change the summit’s location or not participate.” ‑‑APP