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‘Pakistan needs to vacate PoK’, says Indian Envoy to UN

The Indian envoy to the UN T S Tirumurti urged Pakistan to leave Pakistan-occupied Kashmir and reminded Islamabad that it was their responsibility to create a conducive environment for talks. As part of a press conference on the August agenda of the United Nations Security Council, Tirumurti stated, ‘Jammu and Kashmir is an integral and inalienable part of India. If there needs to be a change in status, it is the vacation of Pakistan occupied Kashmir’.

He was responding to a Pakistani journalist who consistently raised Kashmir and India’s abrogation of special status for the erstwhile state. As is customary, every UNSC president gives a press conference on his first working day in office. India, which has been a non-permanent member of the UNSC for two years, holds the presidency this month.

The Indian envoy told the Pakistani journalist, ‘These are constitutional changes and these changes are within our constitution and these changes are entirely the prerogative of the Parliament of India. I don’t think that at this point of time, we are discussing anything else. It is absolutely legitimate on our parliament to pass, rules and regulations relating to Jammu and Kashmir.’

India as the administrator of the council will hold three signature events, one on August 9 on Maritime Security, which will perceive address by PM Modi and two others on Peacekeeping (August 18) and Counter-terror (August 19) to be chaired by External Affairs Minister Dr S Jaishankar.

The envoy responded to a question on India-Pakistan ties by saying, ‘India desires normal neighbourly relations with Pakistan’ and ‘if there are issues between India and Pakistan it should be resolved bilaterally and peacefully’ mentioning of the Shimla agreement, which ‘provides for a bilateral discussion and resolution of issues’.

He stressed the importance of resolving these issues in an environment ‘free from terror and hostility and violence’ and ‘the onus is on Pakistan to create such a conducive atmosphere including by taking credible and verifiable action not to allow any territory under its control to be used for cross border terrorism against India’.

In December 2022, India will be president of the UNSC. The country was president of the body in June 1950, September 1967, December 1972, October 1977, February 1985, October 1991, December 1992, August 2011, November 2012. The president sets the agenda for the month, coordinates important meetings, and is an influential figure.


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