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Kashmiris should be free to decide their future by themselves, Congresman Ron Wright

By: Amir Makhani
Dallas:US Congressman and member of Foreign Relations Committee Congressman Ron Wright said that Kashmiris should be free to decide their future by themselves. No country or international forum should be allowed to(contnue page3)dictate to Kashmiris on their plight. He was talking to local group of journalists at the residence of Pakistan Society of North Texas President Mr. Abid Maliks house. This meeting was a dinner reception in honor of Azad Kashmir Prime Minister Raja Farooq Haider.He said that people of Kashmir have the right to decide about their fate as this is how this conflict can be resolved. He said that Prime Minister unilateral action in ending Kashmirs special status is not only dangerous and highly provocative. This illegal step is essentially denial of basic human rights for Kashmiri people. He said that through legislations and sending military to Kashmir is violation of human rights and is not acceptable to the world.Congressman Wright said we’re in substantial agreement on terms of the future of Kashmir ultimately this should be determined by the people, as they should determine their own destiny, determine their own identity. It should not be forced on them by other countries, or any International body and ultimately that is how this should be resolved. Prime Minister Modi is actions in the last couple of weeks is a dangerous development and a dangerous provocation. He said that it is lawlessness and denial of fundamental rights there. It is against Indian constitution in sending in troops all over Kashmir and the communication blackout. He said that this should not be acceptable to anybody in the International Community. It should be condemned immediately for relaxation of these tensions, because nothing can be accomplished, we can’t go forward as long as things are the way they are right now. He said that military units should be removed from Kashmir to start dialogues for ease in tension.He said that he had good discussion with Prime Minister Haider and being a congressman, he also is a member of Foreign Affairs Committee. He said that he will talk to Republican leader Michael McCall and with committee chair. He said that US Congress work through committees and Foreign Affairs committee is an important one in Congress. He said that he will also talk to state department, so we can help people of Kashmir in this regard. Responding to a question as what US government can do in this regard, he said that we can do a lot through diplomacy and diplomatic pressure, and economic pressure can also be used to broker a dialogue and ease in tension. He said that we are working to be out of Afghanistan, and we dont want to go to any other country as wars should be avoided. He said that America can prevent a war situation in this region. He said that though I am not spokesman of the President, but America can bring all the parties to negotiating table. He said that American constitution guarantees religious freedom as a constitutional right. He said that if India is a Hindu majority country then they should protect Muslim minority, as we protect Hindus as a religious minority in this country.He said that America is multi faith society where we dont have any restriction on people praying by their faith. This is why we expect people to be respectful of all religions and let everyone practice their faith with no compulsion. He said that countries where Muslims are in majority should also respect the rights of religious minorities in their countries

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