Islamabad, August 20: Pakistan said on Tuesday it will take the Kashmir issue to the International Court of Justice (ICJ) following India’s decision to revoke the special status of Jammu and Kashmir.
The move came four days after the UN Security Council held closed and informal consultations on the Kashmir issue – the first time such a meeting was held since 1971 – though there was no formal outcome or statement. Pakistan’s leadership has already pledged to raise the issue at all international forums.
Pakistan’s foreign minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi told ARY News channel that the government had made an “in-principle decision” to take the Kashmir issue to the ICJ, and that it would be taken up “as soon as possible”.
“We had to see what were our legal options. We were examining the options and after that, we have come to the decision that we have a strong position and we can take it to the ICJ,” he said.
“After discussions, this decision has been made,” he added.
Asked by the channel whether Pakistan intended to take up human rights violations or the change of the status of Kashmir at the ICJ, Qureshi said legal details would be provided by the law ministry, but did not go into details.
Pakistan’s de facto information minister Firdous Ashiq Awan also told reporters following a cabinet meeting that the government had granted in-principle approval to the move to take the Kashmir issue to the UN’s principal judicial organ.
She said the case will be presented with a focus on human rights violations. A panel of internationally reputed lawyers will be engaged to pursue the case on behalf of Pakistan, she added.
There was no immediate response from Indian officials. However, people familiar with developments said New Delhi had made preparations for the possibility of Islamabad taking the Kashmir issue to the ICJ or any other international court before the Indian government announced its decision to revoke Jammu and Kashmir’s special status on August 5.
In a separate development, Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad Bin Salman spoke to Prime Minister Imran Khan over phone on Monday night. They exchanged views on the situation in Kashmir, media reports said. Khan told the crown prince about the latest situation in the region and the two leaders also discussed the regional security situation. (Courtesy: HT)