Press Release – In-House meeting with 5-Member Delegation from Iraq

Dated: 25-Jul-2019

Press Release
In-House Meeting with 5-Member Delegation from Iraq
July 25, 2019

The Institute of Strategic Studies Islamabad (ISSI) hosted a 5-Member delegation from Iraq. The agenda of the meeting was to underscore the contrasting human rights situation in Azad Jammu & Kashmir (AJK) and Indian Occupied Kashmir (IOK). The Iraqi delegation was headed by Shaikh Dr. Hamam Hamoudi, Head of the Islamic Supreme Council of Iraq (a political party & part of the ruling bloc) while the rest of the delegation included: Dr. Sana Al-Musawi, MP from Najaf and Member of the Services Committee of the Parliament; Mr. Amer Al-Fa’ez, MP from Basra and Member of Foreign Relations Committee of the Parliament; Mr. Sami Araji, Chairman, Investment Commission of Iraq; Mr. Ahmad Al-Hassani, Director, Foreign and International Relations in the Office of Shaikh Dr. Hamam Hamoudi.

Chairman ISSI Ambassador Khalid Mahmood welcomed the delegation and briefed on the contrasting human rights situation in AJK and IOK. He informed the delegation of geo-political and geo-economic landscape of the South Asian region and, afterwards, contextualized Kashmir Dispute in this milieu. Explaining Pakistan’s stance on the solution of the dispute, he detailed the possible solutions to resolve the dispute: Firstly, he emphasized that after both Pakistan and India became nuclear weapon states, war is impossible; secondly, to resolve the issue bilaterally; thirdly, to seek third-party mediation either by friendly state(s) or by an international organisation. While tracing the historical and legal dimensions of the dispute, Ambassador Khalid shed light on garnering international support for Pakistan’s stance on resolving the Kashmir dispute in the light of the UN Resolutions by giving the Kashmiri population their right to self-determination and to choose their own future. With OHCR reports exposing Indian forces’ heinous crimes against humanity, Chairman ISSI explained, it is about time the international community should play its role in resolving the Kashmir dispute.

Shaikh Dr. Hamam Hamoudi, Head of the Islamic Supreme Council of Iraq expressed grave concerns over the grim human rights situation in Kashmir and put forward a proposal of collaborating in academic and research activities on Kashmir issue to develop understanding of the issue and spread awareness about it. Responding to this suggestion, Chairman ISSI welcomed the proposal of joining hands with the Iraqi institutes as suggested by Dr. Hamoudi. During an exchange of views, Dr. Hamoudi raised a question about the nature of Kashmir dispute being a bilateral issue between Pakistan and India. In response, Ambassador Khalid Mahmood described that besides political and legal aspects to the dispute, there is the dimension of human rights as well which naturally makes the Kashmir dispute, a humanitarian and international issue. Dr. Hamoudi suggested that, for garnering full support on the Kashmir issue, we must have international community by our side. Mr. Sami Araji, Chairman, Investment of Commission of Iraq proposed that some sort of a rapprochement between Pakistan and India is the best option to resolve the issue through political means in a peaceful manner.

Chairman ISSI Ambassador Khalid concluding the meeting reiterated his initial statement regarding peaceful resolution of the Kashmir dispute under the auspices of the UN Resolutions and with the consent of the Kashmiri people. He emphasized that India should immediately stop its atrocities against innocent Kashmiris who have been subjected to tyranny and oppression for more than seven decades and multiple objective reports by international organisations are a testament to it now as well. In the end, Chairman ISSI Ambassador Khalid Mahmood thanked the delegation and presented ISSI memento and publications to Dr. Hamoudi and asked the delegation to visit Pakistan again.