Stepping up its attempts to internationalise the Kashmir issue, Pakistan has written to the UN chief on the security situation along the LoC and the International Border with India and sought the world body's intervention in resolving the issue.
In a letter to UN chief Ban ki-moon, Adviser to the Pakistan Prime Minister on National Security and Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz accused India of "deliberate and unprovoked violations of the ceasefire agreement and cross-border firing" over the past weeks.
"I write to bring to your urgent attention the deteriorating security situation along the Line of Control in Jammu and Kashmir, as well as along the International Border between Pakistan and India...
"As you are aware, the Jammu and Kashmir dispute is one of the long outstanding issues on the agenda of the UN Security Council, whose resolutions promising the holding of a plebiscite, under the auspices of the United Nations, for self-determination of the people of Jammu and Kashmir, remain valid though unimplemented to date," Aziz wrote in the letter which was released by Pakistan Foreign Office here.
He added that Pakistan has been reminding the UN and the international community since decades to fulfill that promise, in the interest of "durable peace and security in the region." Referring to Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif's address to UN General Assembly last month during which he emphasised on the need to resolve the whole issue of Jammu and Kashmir, Aziz said "unfortunately, India has adopted a policy that runs counter to its stated desire to engage in a serious bilateral dialogue with Pakistan." He added, "India cancelled, unilaterally and without any plausible justification, the Foreign Secretary level talks that were scheduled to be held on August 25, 2014." Asking Ban to circulate the letter as an official document of the Security Council, Aziz said Pakistan believes that the UN has an important role to play in promoting the objective of peaceful resolution of the Kashmir issue, including through his "good offices, which we have always welcomed, and the crucial role of the UNMOGIP on ground, which needs to be strengthened and facilitated under the current circumstances."
Aziz alleged India escalated the situation along the LoC and claimed that the persistent shelling and firing resulted in civilian casualties on the Pakistan side.
"During the period 1-10 October, 20 ceasefire violations along the LoC and 22 violations along the International Border were reported, resulting in 12 civilian casualties, 52 injured civilians and 9 injured military personnel on the Pakistani side.
"From June to August 2014, there were 99 ceasefire violations along the LoC and 32 along the International Border. In all, during 2014, 174 ceasefire violations along the LoC and 60 along the International Border have been reported," he wrote.
Aziz said, "Pakistan has exercised utmost restraint and responsibility in responding to these provocations", with hope that "better sense would prevail on the Indian side to prevent the situation from spiraling out of control." "We cannot draw a veil on the issue of Kashmir, until it is addressed in accordance with the wishes of the people of Jammu and Kashmir," he said.
He welcomed the statement of UN Security Council urging calm and said the UNMOGIP personnel were taken by Pakistan to areas along the LoC to observe first-hand situation.
Aziz said, "Pakistan was committed to peaceful resolution of all issues between India and Pakistan, including the core issue of Jammu and Kashmir in the best interest of both India and Pakistan and the region." The decision to write the letter was taken at the meeting on National Security Committee on Friday. The Committee meeting was chaired by Sharif and attended by top military officials and senior cabinet members.
The Indo-Pak border has witnessed heavy firing since October 1 that has left eight persons dead and injured nearly 90 people, including 13 security men, in Jammu and Kashmir.
Besides over 32,000 people have fled from their border homes. India has stuck to its tough stance on ceasefire violations by Pakistan by asking it to end the present "adventurism" but made it clear that it has "no fear of talks".
On Pakistan alleging that India started the ceasefire violations, New Delhi last week said the allegations were being made by those who harboured al-Qaeda chief Osama bin Laden for over a decade while telling their western partners that they were supporting the global war against terror.
Observing that while the new government was serious about bilateral dialogue in a peaceful atmosphere, India had said that what Pakistan gave in return was media spectacle before exploratory foreign secretary-level talks, hostile propaganda against it at the international level, continued terrorism and more violence against citizens on international boundary.