Pakistan's Ambassador to Ankara Syrus Sajjad Qazi has stressed that Turkey's support and solidarity to the Kashmiris and its international efforts for the resolution of the long-standing conflict of Kashmir are deeply appreciated.
"Turkey has been one of the most important voices, consistently raising the plight of the Kashmiris internationally and recognizing their right to self-determination in accordance with the relevant resolutions of the U.N. Security Council," the Pakistani ambassador said on Monday, speaking in an organization observing Kashmir Solidarity Day.
The Kashmir conflict between Pakistan and India, which started following the partition of India in 1947, remains unresolved as both countries claim the control of the region. The resolutions of the U.N. on the issue are yet to be implemented. Pakistan assiduously calls for the implementation of the U.N. Security Council's decision of referendum in 1948 to resolve the dispute. The Kashmir conflict prompted three wars in 1948, 1965 and 1971. Currently, India holds 45 percent of Kashmir while Pakistan controls 35 percent and China 20 percent of the region.
"The U.N. Security Council, through its numerous resolutions, clearly and unequivocally, declared that the final disposition of the State of Jammu & Kashmir would be made in accordance with the will of the people expressed through the democratic method of a free and impartial plebiscite, conducted under the auspices of the United Nations," Ambassador Qazi stated.
Speaking at the event, Turkey's Deputy Foreign Minister Ahmet Yıldız said, "The future of Kashmir must be decided by a referendum in the region in accordance with U.N. resolutions."
Underlining that Jammu & Kashmir remains today as one of the most militarized zones in the world, Qazi said, "The seven decades of crimes against humanity in Indian-occupied Kashmir is a blot on the collective conscience of humanity, marked by the discovery of mass graves, rape and sexual assault, extra-judicial killings and torture."
In relation to the Kashmir conflict, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has been calling on sides to seek resolution through dialogue and reiterated that Turkey is ready to provide all means of support for a resolution.