Ankara Declaration: International Kashmir Congress
By Our Special Correspondent
“International Kashmir Congress is something that we should be very proud to have been associated with. Hopefully, we can look back on this conference as a turning point in the struggle for Kashmiri liberation. It became clear in the course of the many excellent presentations that International Law and the UN authority should be effective in liberating Kashmir. But a realistic view is that International Law and the UN cannot be effective unless they are politically implemented. Under these circumstances the civil societies throughout the world have a huge role to play in shaping a political strategy that complements the legal analysis, and finally brings justice to the people of Kashmir. To achieve liberation for Kashmir depends above all on fulfilling the inalienable right of self-determination, which has been withheld by India for 75 years.” Prof Richard Falk
Three days International Kashmir Congress was held in Ankara Turkey.
We the representatives of the people of Indian Occupied Jammu & Kashmir, along with those in solidarity in Ankara, Turkiye, as well as academicians and researchers and particularly victims of occupation, oppression and settler colonialism in Palestine and elsewhere, solemnly declare that:
· From 9th December to 12th December 2022, we participated in the conference titled ‘The narrative of occupation and scopes of international law: A preview of Occupied Kashmir’ organized under the auspices of International Kashmir Congress held in Ankara, Turkiye.
· That international community has failed the people of Indian occupied Kashmir for many decades.
· That India has flagrantly violated international law, norms, conventions, and treaties in the course of implementation and its unlawful occupation, with the criminal intention of colonizing and annexing Kashmir.
· That the Indian state is aggressively pursuing a fascist agenda in occupied Kashmir and has been perpetrating the war crimes, crime against humanity and crime of aggression and doing so with total impunity and zero accountability.
· India, which is an electoral autocracy, has been cynically deceiving the world by adhering to the empty forms of democracy, peace and justice without any intention of acting in conformity with these ideals, it has done this to hoodwink international community into believing that the fate of Kashmir is subject to India’s legitimate authority which in reality is manipulated by its fake constitutionalism.
· That India in continuation of its colonial project has deprived the Kashmiri people of the mirage of limited safeguards that were derived from United Nation Security Council resolutions (UNSC);
· That India had long been brutally repressing the movement for exercise of Kashmiris’ human rights, above all the inalienable Right to Self-determination; India has relied on intense coercion ever since 1947, these policies were intensified by the decrees put into effect by India in August 2019.
· We reject India’s aggression, illegal occupation, coercion, and denial of the sacred right of self-determination in all forms.
· That we implore the international community finally to act in accord with the principle of ‘Injustice anywhere is threat to justice everywhere’.
· That we, the Kashmiris, victims of India’s aggression are duty bound to protect our land, people, culture and freedoms and uphold rights as guaranteed by international law.
· That the indigenous population is under threat and has every right and duty to resist oppression and uphold the rights of self-defence against the perpetrators of ‘Crimes against humanity’, ‘War crimes’ & ‘Crimes of aggression.’
· That the failure of international community and its institutions in occupied Kashmir are discrediting the UN, drawing into question its very existence and validity.
· That India disregards and undermines the international justice system which is encouraging fascists, autocrats and aggressors throughout the world, likewise, to oppress freedoms and violate International human rights, international humanitarian laws and International criminal law.
· That the UN Charter which describes and mandates intervention in case of violation of international peace and security should abandon double standards and discriminatory enforcements and it is long overdue that the Charter be implemented in occupied Kashmir to the full extent of the law.
· That in Kashmir’s rightful and long struggle for self-determination we appeal and advocate unconditional solidarity by the International community and urge an immediate end in aiding and abetting India’s atrocities, crimes and Human rights violations and act in accordance with its moral and legal responsibilities, not only for the sake of the long-suffering people of Kashmir, but for the benefit of all peoples throughout the world that seek a just world order based on the observance of the rule of Law and respect for the rights of all.
“Ankara Declaration” was signed by the following and adopted unanimously by all the participants of the Congress.
Professor Richard Falk, Professor Emeritus of International Law, Princeton University
Dr Hilal Elver, Fellow at the Resnick Centre for Food Law and Policy
Mr. Zaid Shuaibi, Coordinator and Policy Member, Civil Society Palestine
Ustaaz, Attiq Agdag, Vice President, ESAM
Advocate Nasir Qadri, Executive Director, Legal Forum for Kashmir
Dr Ghulam N. Mir, President, World Kashmir Awareness forum
Mr. Ghulam Muhammad Safi, All Parties Hurriyat Conference
Professor (Dr) Niaz A Shah, Professor of Law, University of Hull, U.K.
Professor Shamim Shawl, All Parties Hurriyat Conference
Advocate Abdul Rashid Turabi, Parliamentarian, Azad Kashmir
Dr Ghulam Nabi Fai, President, World Forum for Peace & Justice