Seoul: The Kashmir Solidarity day is observed on the 5th of February all over the world to express solidarity with the people of Kashmir in their valiant struggle against the repressive occupation of India. It was observed with great solemnity and fervor in Seoul, South Korea (Republic of Korea). The function was held at a local hotel by “The Friends of Kashmir Association”.
The function commenced with a recitation from the Holy Quran followed by translation. The event was attended by Pakistanis, Koreans and representatives of the print media.
The people of Kashmir have been struggling against the Indian occupation for the last 65 years. The issue of Kashmir is considered an unfinished issue of partition of the Indian subcontinent into India and Pakistan in 1947 by the British rulers. At that time, states of the subcontinent were given the choice of joining either India or Pakistan, keeping in view the preferences of the people of the particular state. While the people of Kashmir who were predominantly Muslims, preferred to merge with Pakistan, the ruler of the state, in connivance with the Indian leaders, opted to merge with India. The issue was taken to the United Nations in 1949 which decided that the matter of the accession of Kashmir to either India or Pakistan shall be decided through a plebiscite held in the state. However, since that day, India has not held the plebiscite on one pretext or the other. The struggle of the people of Kashmir intensified in 1990. Since then, more than 100,000 people have lost their lives, and a large number of men and women injured.
Major General (Retd) AhnChoung Jun, Sitara-e-Quaid-e-Azam, Former Commander / Special Envoy of the UN Secretary General for UNMOGIP, spoke on the occasion. During his address, he recalled his experiences and referred to the brutalities committed against the innocent Kashmiri people by the Indian forces in Occupied Kashmir. He emphasized that the people of Kashmir should be given the right to self-determination in accordance with UN resolutions on Kashmir.
The gathering was also attended, amongst others, by prominent Kashmiris and members of Pakistani organisations settled in South Korea. Mr. Khurshid Ahmed Khan, a prominent Kashmiri, also addressed the occasion, and talked about some of his personal experiences in occupied Kashmir. A video on the atrocities committed by the Indian forces, on the brave Kashmiri people, was also played.
During the event, the Charge D Affairs of Pakistan in Republic of Korea, Mr. Shahbaz M. Malik, delivered a presentation. The origins of the Kashmir Dispute and struggle of the Kashmiri people since 1947 against the Indian Occupation were highlighted.