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Pakistan marks Kashmir Solidarity Day with Korean, Pakistani dignitariesKoreans have sympathy for Kashmir as they suffer from division

The Embassy of Pakistan in Seoul hosted a Kashmir Solidarity Day event at the Capital Hotel in Seoul Feb. 5, 2015 with the attendance of dignitaries from Korean society as well as from the Pakistani Embassy.
Attending the meeting, among the hosts and guests, were Ambassador Zahid Nasrullah Khan of Pakistan, Chairman Oh Jae-hee of the Korea-Pakistan Friendship Association, Professor Ahn Choung-jun of Jingeomdari Academy (Maj. Gen. ret.), President & CEO Khurshid Ahmed Khan of JKR Ltd., Professor Eun-ik Son of Keimyung University Dangsan Medical Center in Daegu and Vice President Park Byung-uk of The Korea Post Media.
Officiated by Community Relations Counsellor Muhammed Humair Karim of the Pakistan Embassy, the seminar heard speeches given by Ambassador Khan of Pakistan, Maj. Gen. Ahn (ret.), Prof. Son of Keimyung University and Rep. Khurshid Ahmed Khan of JKR Ltd.

▲From left, foreground, Ambassador Zahid Nasrullah Khan of Pakistan, Maj.Gen (Ret) Ahn Choung-ju (former Commanding Generaland Special Envoy of the UN Secretary General for UNMOGIP) and former Korean Ambassador Oh Jae-hee to Pakistan.

Maj. Gen. Ahn (commander of the UN Peace-keeping Forces in Kashmir) said that all the peoples of the world should not turn a blind eye to the misery of the victims of the Kashmir dispute. Ahn regretted that the people of Kashmir are still struggling for their rightof self-determination which was promised to them by the UN Security Council Resolutions. (See experts at the end of this article.)
These views were also shared by other Korean speakers, includingProfessor Dr. Son Eun Ik of Keimyung University, President of Korea-Azad Jammu & Kashmir Association andAmbassador Oh Jae-hee (first Korean ambassador to Pakistan).
Ambassador Khan of Pakistan in Seoul highlighted that Pakistan would continue to extend political, diplomatic and moral support to the Kashmiri brethren. He stated, inter-alia, that the Government of Pakistan would continue to extend political, diplomatic and moral support to the people of Kashmir until they achieve their inalienable right of self-determination. Holding of this event every year expresses support and solidarity of the people and Government of Pakistan with the people of Kashmir.
Ambassador Khan stated that there could be no lasting peace and stability in nuclearized Asia until a just and lasting solution is found to the Kashmir dispute in accordance with the relevant UN Security Council Resolutions that promises a free, fair and impartial plebiscite to determine the will of the people of Kashmir. Since these Resolutions remain unimplemented, therefore, the Kashmir dispute is an unfinished item on the agenda of the list of the Security Council.

▲From left, Maj. Gen (Ret) Ahn Choung-ju (former Commanding Generaland Special Envoy of the UN Secretary General for UNMOGIP), former Korean Ambassador Oh Jae-hee to Pakistan, Ambassador Zahid Nasrullah Khan of Pakistan, Professor Son Eun-ik of Keimyung University,Honorary Investment Counselor Sooba Khan of Board of Investment of Pakistan, Brig. Gen. Naveed Ali of Pakistan Armyand Rep.Khurshid Ahmed Khan of JKRLtd.

Ambassador further added that while Pakistan had extended a hand of friendship to the Indian government but unfortunately, the Indian government cancelled the Foreign Secretary level talks that were to be held in August 2014 on the flimsy excuse that the High Commissioner of Pakistan in New Delhi had met with the Kashmiri leadership, who had called on him in New Delhi. Instead of responding positively to Pakistan’s constructive and positive gestures, according to Ambassador Khan, including the visit of the Prime Minister of Pakistan to India on the occasion of inauguration of the Prime Minister of India, the Indian government had resorted to unprovoked artillery fire and thus heating up the Working Boundary and the Line of Control.
He reiterated that Pakistan believed in a peaceful solution of the Kashmir issue in accordance with the wishes and aspirations of the people of Kashmir.

Excerpts from the speech of Maj. Gen. Ahn (ret.):

Last year we faced various and complex problems in Korea and around the world ? such as Ebola virus and economic recession overseas and the Sewol-Ho Incident in Korea, a ship that sank in the sea making the Korean people fall in deep sorrows and causingnational economic difficulties.
In various situations I mentioned before, the right to live as human being should be considered the most important thing. In the other words, human rights must be guaranteed in any situation. Therefore, I strongly believe that Kashmir problem should be resolved with peaceful methods as soon as possible.

▲Community Relations Counsellor Muhammed Humair Karim of the Pakistan Embassy (behind mike) officiates the meeting of Kashmir Solidarity Day.

As you know, I am still proud of having served as the Commander of UNMOGIP, I had numerous first-hand experiences on the area of Kashmir.The most important thing for this over 66-year-long conflict is to search for a permanent settlement. This is not only for Kashmir and the two concerned parties of India and Pakistan, but also for the entire world.
Like the situation at the DMZ in the Korea, the military standoff between India and Pakistan cannot be underestimated. Moreover, Pakistan and India should withdraw their forces and start to build a friendly relationship.
The cause of this tension is the issue of Kashmir, the most crucial agenda between India and Pakistan.
In 1949 the United Nations decided to grant the people of Kashmir the right of self-determination over their destiny and let them choose either India or Pakistan.
The majority of the people in Kashmir are Muslims, so they might wish to be on the side of Pakistan, an Islamic country.
The area of Kashmir was once called ‘the Alps of the Orient’ but now, there are people and the innocent nature crying out with agony. Besides, there were only the heavily armed soldiers positioned every one hundred meters and devastated buildings and debris throughout the area. No hope, no vision, only despair prevails.
Their crying still lingers on in my ears. How sublime and invaluable the word Freedom is! No more toleration toward the attitude of indifferent observation!
We, all the people in the world, should do whatever is needed to stop this pain: it is no other person’s business butit is our obligation.
I hope that the leaders and peoples of India and Pakistan have faith and wisdom to peacefully solve all the problems.

이경식 기자  edt@koreapost.com

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