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Friday, December 9, 2022

Normalisation of ties between India, Pak must for peace in South Asia: UN official

The peace, stability and prosperity in South Asia hinged on the normalisation of relations between Pakistan and India, a top UN official said here on Thursday as he urged the two neighbours to work for a peaceful solution to the Kashmir issue.

UN General Assembly President Volkan Bozkir, a former Turkish diplomat and politician who is in Pakistan on an official visit, made the comments during a talk on the ‘Importance of Multilateralism’ at the National Defence University here.

Bozkir said peace, stability and prosperity in South Asia hinged on the normalisation of relations between Pakistan and India, which was possible by the resolution of the Kashmir issue.

“I urge India and Pakistan to work for a peaceful solution to this problem,” he said.

“I have always urged the parties to refrain from changing the status of the disputed territory,” Bozkir said, apparently in a veiled reference to India’s move to bifurcate Jammu and Kashmir into two union territories in August 2019.

Bozkir, who arrived in Islamabad on Wednesday for an official visit at the invitation of Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi, also held talks with him in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and among other matters discussed the issue of Kashmir.

Bozkir “reiterated that @UN position on the Jammu and Kashmir dispute is governed by the UN Charter and relevant #UNSC resolutions…,” the Foreign Office tweeted.

Ties between India and Pakistan nose-dived after an attack on the Pathankot Air Force base in 2016 by militant groups. Subsequent attacks, including one on Indian Army camp in Uri, further deteriorated the relationship.

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