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Pakistan urges UN to probe Kashmir killings

Pakistan urges UN to probe Kashmir killings

Islamabad: Pakistan has urged the UN to conduct an inquiry into the killings that took place in Jammu and Kashmir over the past two months and demanded a free and fair plebiscite in the disputed region, the Foreign Office said on Wednesday.

Pakistan Prime Minister's recently appointed special envoy on Kashmir Awais Leghari highlighted the "grave human rights violations by Indian security forces in Kashmir" in front of the international community in Geneva.

Leghari, in his meeting with UNHRC President Choi Kyong-lim, urged the UN to conduct an inquiry into the "killings and uphold the right of Kashmiris to determine their future as per UN Security Council resolutions which call for a free and fair plebiscite in the disputed region".

Leghari is one of the 22 Members of Parliament nominated by Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif last month as special envoys to lobby for the Kashmir cause in important world capitals.

He met United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) President Choi, President of the International Committee of the Red Cross Peter Maurer and other ambassadors to apprise them about the "atrocities being committed by Indian occupation forces on the defenceless people" of the Kashmir Valley, a Foreign Office statement here said.

Leghari, who is the chairman of the National Assembly's Committee on Foreign Affairs, highlighted the impact of pellet gun injuries leading to "dead eyes" phenomenon among Kashmiri protestors.

The special envoy referred to the Prime Minister's letters addressed to UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and the UNHRC chief "to stop the grievous brutalities of Indian security forces".

The Nawaz Sharif government has been coming under growing domestic pressure to highlight globally the casualties in the Kashmir valley during protests against Indian forces, which broke out after the death of a militant leader on July 8.

At least 76 people have been killed and thousands injured in the worst violence to hit the territory since 2010.

Authorities lifted a curfew in most parts of the territory late last month, but schools, shops and many banks remain closed while residents struggle with a communications blackout.

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