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PM Imran, Khalilzad discuss Afghan peace in New York

United States Special Representative for Afghanistan Reconciliation Zalmay Khalilzad has met Prime Minister Imran Khan, who is in New York to attend the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) session.

They discussed various issues, including the Afghan peace process on Sunday, Radio Pakistan reported.

Earlier in the day, Amnesty International Secretary General Kumi Naidoo also met Imran to discuss worsening human rights situation in Indian-Occupied Kashmir (IOK) since India’s illegal and unilateral actions of August 5.

“Worsening human rights situation in IOK as a result of an excruciating clampdown by Indian occupying authorities” was discussed at the meeting, Foreign Office spokesperson Dr Muhammad Faisal said in a tweet.

PM Imran appreciated the lead role that Amnesty was playing in presenting the real state of human rights in the occupied territory and amplifying the voices of the Kashmiri population in a state of seven-week-long lockdown. These efforts had helped raise international community’s awareness about the continuing suffering of the Kashmiri people, he added.

He also lauded the Amnesty’s report on the use of pellet guns by India and their devastating impact on Kashmiri youth.

Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi, who was also present at the meeting, noted that the two UN reports on Kashmir served as a strong basis for continued civil society advocacy in support of the Kashmiri people.

Naidoo briefed PM Imran on Amnesty’s advocacy work on Kashmir, including #LetKashmirSpeak. He updated him on the right group’s work relating to climate justice and suggested consideration of global south advocacy by the prime minister on a range of climate change-related issues.

Imran is on a weeklong visit to New York to attend the UN General Assembly and be part of a host of other activities, including a meeting US President Donald Trump.

On Saturday, Kashmir Study Group founder Farooq Kathwari met the premier and discussed the prevailing situation in the occupied territory. During the meeting, the premier highlighted India’s illegal and unilateral actions of August 5 and the inhuman 50-day-long lockdown of over eight million Kashmiris.

Kathwari, on the occasion, highlighted the Kashmir Study Group’s earlier engagement on the Kashmir issue and efforts for conflict resolution.

The prime minister asked him to expose the real face of fascist Modi regime before the world. He urged the group to highlight the prevailing situation which imposed immeasurable suffering on the Kashmiri people and posed a grave threat to regional peace.

Adviser on Commerce Abdul Razak Dawood, Prime Minister’s Special Assistant Naeemul Haq, Pakistan’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations Maleeha Lodhi, Ambassador to the US Asad Majeed and other senior officials were also present on the occasion.

According to the PM’s media team, he Imran will hold separate meetings with Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and US Republican Senator Lindsey Graham.

A meeting with the president of the International Committee of the Red Cross, Peter Maurer, is also expected.

Besides the above, meetings with the CEO of Uber, a delegation of Kashmiri leaders and a group of Sikh community members are also scheduled.

Prime Minister Imran is due to address the UN General Assembly on September 27. He has already announced that he will highlight the Kashmir issue in his address, exposing the ethical and legal bankruptcy of India’s August 5 annexation of Occupied Kashmir. Ambassador Lodhi said that this a “mission Kashmir” for the prime minister and for Pakistan.

Today, Imran is expected to meet British Prime Minister Boris Johnson. His first official engagement at the UN is a meeting with China’s Vice President Wang Qishan.

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