GENEVA: Pakistan’s permanent representative to the United Nations, Dr. Maleeha Lodhi said on Tuesday that Pakistan would effectively respond to any Indian aggression after repeated threats to carry out surgical strikes by the country’s eastern neighbor.
“All I can say to them is: do not underestimate Pakistan’s resolve and capacity to defend itself.”
“Any aggression or intervention will meet a matching and effective response from our armed forces and the people of Pakistan,” added Lodhi while participating in a debate on the annual report of UN Secretary-General on the work of the organisation.
“India claims, falsely, to have conducted a so-called ‘surgical strike’ across the Line of Control. This claim, and India’s repeated threats to conduct such ‘strikes’ across the LOC, constitute flagrant violations of the UN Charter’s injunction against the use or threat of use of force,”
She further said that this provides Pakistan sufficient reason to respond in an exercise of its right to self-defence.
She also questioned if Indian leaders were trying to provoke a conflict with Pakistan by making such false claims and blatant threats.
She also urged the world body to take “urgent” action to prevail on India to control its threatening behaviour.
Lodhi added that India has resorted to daily violations of the ceasefire agreement along the Line of Control (LoC) to divert international attention from its atrocities in Indian-occupied Kashmir (IoK).
Describing the continuing Indian occupation of Jammu and Kashmir as a travesty of justice, law and morality, the Pakistani envoy said the people of Indian occupied Kashmir still awaited the implementation of numerous Security Council resolutions, adopted some 70 years ago, that promised them their inalienable right to self-determination.
India has used brutal and indiscriminate force to suppress the heroic indigenous freedom movement against the occupation, she said, noting that hundreds of innocent, unarmed Kashmiris had been martyred in the recent wave of protests; countless others have been blinded and maimed by pellet guns, in what had widely been described as the first “mass blinding” in human history.
Indian atrocities in Jammu and Kashmir, she said, were well-documented by international human rights organisations, but India defended them.
“It does not express remorse for the acts of the perpetrators of these war crimes. It rewards them with national honours.,” said Ambassador Lodhi
“Yet, these universal ideals are being violated, in plain sight of the international community, in Palestine, in Indian occupied Jammu and Kashmir, and elsewhere.”
“The only terrorism in Kashmir is India’s state terrorism,” she said.
Pakistan, said Lodhi, had been on the frontlines in the fight against terrorism, with its military campaign, involving over 200,000 troops, having crushed and eliminated terrorist groups in the country’s frontier regions and its towns and cities.
“Despite paying a heavy price Pakistan would continue this fight until its objectives were achieved.”
The Pakistani envoy called for comprehensively addressing terrorism in all its forms.
“Extremist ideologies must be challenged and countered,” she said.
Over the years, Lodhi said, peacekeeping had remained the UN’s flagship enterprise for conflict prevention, mediation and sustaining peace.
“Pakistan, as one of the world’s top troop contributing country, was proud to have played its part in bringing hope to the lives of millions of people, caught up in conflict across the world.”
“This year alone, five Pakistani peacekeepers had paid the ultimate sacrifice to uphold international peace and security,” she added.
Pakistani peacekeepers, she said, had always displayed the highest standards of professionalism and conduct.