UK Parliament slams Pak move to annex Gilgit-Baltistan
27 Mar 2017
The British Parliament has passed a resolution condemning Islamabad's declaration that Gilgit-Baltistan is its fifth frontier, and asserted that the region is a legal and constitutional part of Jammu & Kashmir illegally occupied by Pakistan since 1947.
The motion, which was tabled on 23 March and sponsored by Conservative Party leader Bob Blackman, stated that Pakistan's announcement implied annexing a disputed area illegally occupied by the country.
"Gilgit-Baltistan is a legal and constitutional part of the state of Jammu & Kashmir, India, which is illegally occupied by Pakistan since 1947, and where people are denied their fundamental rights including the right of freedom of expression," the motion read.
The resolution further said Pakistan's move is an attempt to change the demography of the region to facilitate the 'forced and illegal construction' of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) in violation of State Subject Ordinance, which would further aggravate Pakistan's illegal interference in the disputed territory.
China, on the other hand, lent support to Pakistan, saying it was ready to work with Islamabad to take forward its pet project, the CPEC, against the wishes of the people of the area or of the international community.
The $51.5-billion China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CEPC) aims to connect Kashgar, in China's western province of Xinjiang, with the port of Gwadar in Pakistani province of Balochistan, through Gilgit-Baltisatan, which is a part of Pakistan-occupied Kashmir.
Meanwhile, Moulana Syed Athar Hussain Dehlavi, the chairman of Anjuman Minhaj-e-Rasool, an Islamic organisation working for peace and communal harmony in Jammu and Kashmir, on Sunday urged the central government to bring a resolution reiterating 1994 Parliament declaration that PoK and Gilgit-Baltistan are part of India.
"The GoI should bring a resolution in this session of the Parliament and unanimously pass it reiterating its stand that Jammu and Kashmir is integral part of India, including PoK and Gilgit-Baltistan," he told reporters here.
He said passing the resolution would foil the designs of Pakistan to make Gilgit-Baltistan its province.
Both Houses of the Parliament had unanimously adopted a resolution on February 22, 1994, emphasising that Jammu and Kashmir was an integral part of India, and that Pakistan must vacate parts of the state under its occupation.
"It is time to pass the resolution of 1994 again and show our resolve on PoK Pakistan-occupied-Kashmir," he said.
The Cleric also strongly batted for declaring Pakistan a terrorist state by using the platform of the SAARC.
"Pak, which is the biggest launching pad of terrorism, should be declared as terrorist state. There is no need to hold talks with Pakistan," he said.