Friday, 19 November 2010

UN Security Council hasn't discussed Kashmir in 45 years

UN Security Council hasn't discussed Kashmir in 45 years

Indrani Bagchi, TNN, Nov 19, 2010, 02.15am IST

NEW DELHI: The "India-Pakistan question", which is a euphemism for the Kashmir question, was last discussed in the UN Security Council in 1965 having been first raised in 1948. Since then the Security Council has not discussed the issue.

Earlier this week, the Pakistan envoy to the UN, Amjad Sial, opened the lid on what is probably the worst kept secret in the UNSC -- that Kashmir as an issue has not been raised in the Council for almost half a century, even during the worst of India-Pakistan relations.

The Pakistan envoy protested in the General Assembly earlier this week that the Kashmir issue was "missing" from the UNSC annual list, describing it as an "inadvertent error." Indian diplomats maintained that it was not inadvertent at all, but that the Kashmir issue was a "dead letter".

Later, UNSC spokesperson Farhan Haq clarified that the annual list submitted to the General Assembly only published issues discussed in the Council from January 1, 2007, and that the full list of issues that had ever been discussed by the Council was in an addendum published in March 2010. That list, Haq said, includes Kashmir, which means Kashmir remains a "live" issue in the UNSC, unlike the Indian interpretation that it was a "dead letter".

However, the addendum in question, posted on March 8, 2010, lists "items which were identified in document S/2010/10 as subject to deletion in 2010 because they had not been considered by the Council at a formal meeting during the three-year period from 1 January 2007 to 31 December 2009". According to UNSC's own rules, these items would be removed from the list in 2010. Which, say, Indian officials, is what was done.

In 2005, the then UN secretary general, Kofi Annan, declared that the "plebiscite" issue could not be enforced or self-implemented. But it was after Annan's remarks, made in the context of the resumption of the India-Pakistan dialogue in 2005, that the UNSC dropped the reference to the dispute. In the past five years there has been no such mention.

Read more: UNSC hasn't discussed Kashmir in 45 yrs - The Times of India

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