Kashmir at the UNHRC: Turkey and OIC Reiterate Pakistan’s Stance


OIC reaffirms unwavering support for Kashmiris, their just cause: FO - World - DAWN.COM

OIC reaffirms unwavering support for Kashmiris, their just cause: FO – World – DAWN.COM

By Anum Khan     18 March 2023

The Turkish support for the Kashmir issue at UNHRC has left the Indian government unveiled and liable for violating human rights, and consequently, the Indian media has gone berserk, lashing out a list of allegations and insinuations against Turkey. India brought up the matter of material support to the earthquake-hit country, referring to Operation Dost (Friend), but the statement busted the hidden motives, “There ain’t no such thing as a free lunch”.

India squarely blamed Turkey, saying, “At the behest of Pakistan, the Turkish government led by PM Erdogan has raked up the Kashmir issue at the UN, and Turkey has backstabbed India”. Ironically, India went to the lowest ebb of democratic norms by saying that, despite Indian cautioning, thugs in the Turkish ship-making industry and its shipyards are supporting Pakistan’s terrorist activities like smuggling contraband through Indian ports.

The statement suggests that the tension between India and Turkey regarding the Kashmir issue is not just a bilateral issue, but it highlights the complicated geopolitical situation in the region. It implies that both countries are facing challenges in balancing their strategic interests with their commitment to democratic principles and human rights. This conflict also highlights the importance of finding a solution that is in line with international human rights standards and respects the democratic aspirations of the Kashmiri people. It also implies that the situation in Kashmir is not just an internal issue of India, but it is also of concern to the international community. The event suggests that a peaceful resolution to the Kashmir conflict is necessary to maintain stability in the region and promote the values of democracy and human rights.

Additionally, while highlighting India’s highly undemocratic and derogatory remarks on Turkey’s support for the ‘Kashmir’ issue at UNHRC, OIC has also criticized India for its human rights abuses in IIOJK. The recent statement of the OIC holds India responsible for not respecting the principled stance of nations that staunchly believe in the UN Human Rights charter. This implies that India is not doing enough to promote and protect human rights in the Indian-administered Jammu and Kashmir (IIOJK) region, where there have been reports of human rights violations. Furthermore, it is an international recognition of the fact that India’s behavior is irresponsible and undemocratic in dealing with human rights security in India, and it is a concern for the Muslim world, OIC, and other international stakeholders. This means that India’s actions have been noticed and criticized by the Muslim world and other international actors, and it may have negative consequences for India’s standing in the international community.

Such events expose India’s farcical claims of isolating Pakistan in international diplomatic circles. India is not ready to respect the principled stance of nations that staunchly believe in the UN Human Rights charter. Additionally, and significantly, Human Rights Watch in its recent report said that the “quiet diplomacy” approach favored by the West had failed to have any visible impact on India, urging Australian PM to raise human rights during his visit to India. The Indian irresponsible and undemocratic behavior needs to be the primary concern for the Muslim world, OIC, and international stakeholders.

Overall, the tensions between India and Turkey over the Kashmir issue have highlighted the complex geopolitical dynamics of the region and the challenges faced by countries in balancing their strategic interests with their commitment to human rights and democratic principles. India’s obsession with Pakistan has begun to bring India criticism in international diplomatic circles. The Indian government is facing pressure from inner circles, and questions are being raised now on whether India had been naive to rush in with ‘Operation Dost (friend),’ indicating a self-centered mindset. India is a great exponent of Chanakya philosophy, and the policy of “a friend of my enemy is my enemy.” ’ Furthermore, when it comes to its foreign policy, India lectures the western world to stop dictating their terms as India is free to pursue its foreign policy initiatives as per its own choice. The recent case of it is India’s non-cooperative partnership with the U.S. For instance, India’s decision to purchase the S-400 missile defense system from Russia; its opposition to the U.S. led TPP and COMCASA.

Any efforts to compel India to secure its human rights should be undertaken in a constructive and collaborative manner, with a focus on promoting dialogue and cooperation. While acknowledging India as an economic hub, international community still needs to hold India accountable for human rights violations by means such as diplomatic pressure that includes bilateral and multilateral meetings, and using diplomatic channels to convey international concerns; promoting concerns of international human rights organizations; legal intervention by the international courts and tribunals; and running public awareness campaigns.

The author is an independent researcher based in Islamabad, Pakistan.