Ahead of UNHRC showdown, Pakistan Minister calls Jammu and Kashmir an 'Indian state'
Geneva, Sept 10 (IBNS): Pakistan might be trying to corner India at international platforms over its move of scrapping Article 370 which had granted special status to Jammu and Kashmir, but one of the ministers of the neighbouring nation on Tuesday called the region as an Indian 'state'.
During his interaction with the media, Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi, who is leading a Pakistan delegation at the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) session in Geneva, was quoted as saying in a video released by ANI news agency: "India is trying to give an impression to the world that life has returned to normalcy. If the life has returned to normalcy, then I say, why don't they allow you, the international media, why don't they allow the international organisations, the NGOs, civil society organisations to go into the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir."
Stage is set for a showdown between India and Pakistan on Tuesday as the two Asian neighbours will make statements on the situation in Jammu and Kashmir during the ongoing session of the UNHRC.
A high-level Indian delegation is already in Geneva for the key session of the 47 member nations.
According to observers, India will seek support from friendly member nations to thwart any Pakistani attempt to press for a resolution against the Union government and its latest measures in Jammu and Kashmir.
Islamabad has already failed to raise the issue at the influential UN Security Council last month.
The 14 members of the UNSC except China in their informal meeting broadly agreed that matters between India and Pakistan should be settled bilaterally in the spirit of the Shimla Agreement of 1972 and Lahore Declaration inked in 1999 during the tenure of Atal Bihari Vajpayee and Nawaz Sharif as Prime Ministers in the two countries.
There are 13 African nations, 13 Asia Pacific, 8 Latin American, 7 western Europe and 6 eastern Europe members in the UNHRC.
The Indian team in Geneva camping for the crucial session is headed by Secretary (East) in the MEA Vijay Thakur Singh.
Sources suggest that essentially India's stand at the UNHRC - like all international fora - would be highlighting the fact that abrogation of Article 370 was strictly an internal matter of India.
During recent international meets and bilateral engagements, the Indian side has tried to convince countries such as Russia and others that any constitutional step taken in Jammu and Kashmir has no international ramification.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi, during his meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin and also with Malaysian counterpart Mahathir Mohamad, explained to them the 'rationale' behind the Union government's decision to bifurcate Jammu and Kashmir and also withdraw the provisions of the Article 370 that gave special status to the state.