A letter signed by 30 MPs and Lords was today presented to the Prime Minister calling on him to raise the issue of Kashmir with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his visit to the UK later this week.
The letter, arranged by the All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Kashmir, asks Prime Minister David Cameron to raise a number of issues with Mr Modi, including the Indian troops stationed in Kashmir, the Black Laws and a renewal of dialogue to allow the region to move towards a peaceful resolution.
Presenting the letter, the Chairman of the Kashmir APPG, Andrew Griffiths MP, said: “The issue of Kashmir is hugely important not just the people living in occupied Kashmir but also to Kashmiris here in Britain. This week’s visit is a unique opportunity for the British Prime Minister to raise concerns about human rights abuses and self-determination for Kashmir with Mr Modi and we hope that our letter will lead to some serious discussions about this very important issue.”
Vice Chair of the Group, Imran Hussain MP also presented the letter. He added: ““For too long the sons and daughters of Kashmir have been denied their right to self-determination and I urge the Prime Minister to raise with Narendra Modi the human rights abuses that have taken place in India and in Kashmir.”
Senior Vice Chair of the APPG, Debbie Abrahams MP said: “Our letter urges the Prime Minister to persuade Mr Modi to support a renewal of dialogue with Kashmiris and to move towards a peace process in the region. The people of Kashmir remain under martial law and beginning the dialogue again would give them hope that a peaceful and sustainable resolution can be found.”
Lord Nazir Ahmed, President of the Kashmir APPG and a longstanding campaigner for Kashmir, added: “It has been almost seventy years since the UN called for a plebiscite to take place in Kashmir, but this has yet to be granted. The Kashmiri diaspora in Britain believe it is right for the British Prime Minister to take a lead on this issue and we hope that this visit will be a productive one.
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi is arriving in the UK on Thursday 12th November for a three day visit. The visit will be the first of its kind to the UK by an Indian premier in a decade.