India’s invasion of Kashmir is violation of UN Charter
September 18, 2023 06:04 PM
The 78th session of the United Nations General Assembly opened on September 5, 2023, and the high-level segment will take place beginning September 19, 2023, where the Heads of the State and Government will make interventions. This year’s theme is: “Rebuilding trust and reigniting global solidarity: Accelerating action on the 2030 Agenda and its Sustainable Development Goals towards peace, prosperity, progress and sustainability for all.” Mr. Antonio Guterres, the Secretary General of the United Nations gave hope to the hopeless people of the world when he said, “The world needs peace and peace in line with the United Nations Charter and international law. We must work harder for peace everywhere. If every country fulfilled its obligations under the Charter, the right to peace would be guaranteed.”
Ambassador Dennis Francis of Trinidad and Tobago and the President of the 78th session of the General Assembly echoed the same sentiments by saying, “As the UN’s chief policy-making body, the General Assembly bears a special responsibility to ensure that our efforts must be anchored in a robust multilateral system, faithful to the cherished values and principles enshrined in the Charter, our Charter.”
We do applaud the United Nations Charter and the principles enshrined in it, even if all of its lofty provisions safeguarding fundamental human freedoms and liberties remain dishonoured in many parts of the globe, it still stands as a moral reproach to wrongdoing nations that may facilitate reforms.
However, sometimes the seeming conspiracy of silence over gross affronts to the United Nations Charter in Indian occupied Kashmir, an occupation which itself violates the UN Charter and still binding United Nations Security Council resolutions dictating a self-determination is worrisome. That unheroic muteness of the world powers has emboldened India to a chilling campaign of human rights atrocities against innocent Kashmiris, despite being the signatory to the UN Charter itself. It is a crime in Kashmir to salute the United Nations Charter or implementation of the Security Council plebiscite resolutions, a shocking affront to the UN General Assembly itself.
We know it well that the most promising way to prevent conflict is to eliminate its causes. The latter are well known. Violence and mayhem ensue because of mankind’s desire for domination, wealth, territory, fame, revenge, and destruction of people and things that are disliked for religious, racial, ethnic, political, cultural, or other reasons. Mr. Guterres was speaking the language of hundreds of millions of people living in occupied lands when he said, “We must address the root causes of conflict, protect vulnerable communities, strengthen social cohesion & invest in peacebuilding.” It is considered opinion of many South Asian experts that the underlying cause of tensions between India and Pakistan is the unresolved conflict of Kashmir.
Mr. Guterres added that “It is also time to bring disarmament and arms control back to the centre – reducing strategic threats from nuclear arms and working for their ultimate elimination. Nuclear-armed countries must renounce the first use of these unconscionable weapons. In fact, they must renounce any use, anytime, anywhere. The so-called ‘tactical’ use of nuclear weapons is an absurdity.”
The Secretary General made us realize the truth that the nuclear age has placed in the world’s lap a growing and complex set of threats that create the possibility of an all-out holocaust in some part of the world almost every day. We now have North Korea threatening Seoul, testing intercontinental ballistic missiles and bragging about hydrogen bombs. But in South Asia, the so-called experts seem to overlook frequently a continuous and ongoing threat of another kind.
Perhaps not by coincidence, the danger of nuclear threat in South Asia will be of paramount interest to the world leaders meeting this week at the UN General Assembly. Kashmir has been regarded by President Bill Clinton as the most dangerous place on earth. Former Prime Minister of New Zealand, Helen Clark said, “Kashmir is a nuclear flashpoint.” It is clearly the bone of contention of nuclear confrontation between India and Pakistan. Kashmir is the only nation in the world which is surrounded by three nuclear powers - India, Pakistan & China.
Perhaps it’s time the major powers take this seriously. The answer is plain as day for anyone. Kashmir has international legitimacy, having numerous UN Security Council resolutions which have given the right to self-determination to the people to decide their destiny. They should once and for all be honored. The clock is ticking. Every day that passes without resolution of Kashmir dispute is one day closer to a cataclysm that will reach far beyond the borders of all countries involved.
Let me conclude by quoting again the Secretary General of the UN, “This is not a time for indifference or indecision…This is a time to come together for real, practical solutions.”