India Condemns Language Used in UK MPs Debate on Kashmir

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India said any assertion made in any forum on a subject related to an integral part of the country needs to be duly substantiated with authentic verifiable facts.

India has expressed its strong dismay after Members of Parliament from the UK’s All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Kashmir tabled a motion on ‘Human rights in Kashmir’ for a debate in the House of Commons.

The Indian High Commission in London said any assertion made in any forum on a subject related to an integral part of the country needs to be duly substantiated with authentic verifiable facts, The Tribune reported.

The Minister for Asia in the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO), Amanda Milling, responded to the debate on Thursday by reiterating the UK government’s unchanged stance on Kashmir as a bilateral issue.

India
Credit@Jessica Taylor_UK Parliament

She said the government takes the situation in Kashmir very seriously but it’s for India and Pakistan to find a lasting political solution, taking into account the wishes of the Kashmiri people.

“It’s not for the UK to prescribe a solution or to act as a mediator,” Milling was quoted as saying.

The India government has expressed its strong displeasure over some of the language used by participating MPs in the Backbench Debate, specifically Pakistani-origin Labour MP Naz Shah.

The Indian High Commission in London condemned the attack on Prime Minister Narendra Modi and highlighted Kashmir’s status as an integral part of India, it was reported.

A top official at the High Commission said that “any assertion made in any forum on a subject related to an integral part of India needs to be duly substantiated with authentic verifiable facts.”

Bob Blackman MP

The debate in the UK Parliament was opened by Opposition Labour Party MP Debbie Abrahams who said the discussion was not to be read as “pro or anti” any country as the lawmakers were only speaking in defence of human rights, the Hindustan Times reported.

“Kashmiris must be at the heart of a trilateral peacebuilding process,” she added.

Over 20 cross-party members participated in the debate, with the ruling Conservative Party MPs Bob Blackman and Theresa Villiers speaking out in favour of Indian courts and institutions ability to “properly investigate alleged human rights abuses”, it was reported.

They said the elections held in Kashmir last year were a positive sign.