UN has come out with a first-of-its-kind human rights report on human rights violations in Kashmir
The UN human rights body chief, Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein, has called for an investigation into “all civilian killings since July 2016” and also into “the excessive use of force by security forces including serious injuries caused by the use of pellet guns immediately stop using pellet guns for crowd control.”
This is the first-ever such report on Kashmir.
Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein said he would urge the Human Rights Council, which opens a new session next week, “to consider establishing a Commission of Inquiry (COI) to conduct a comprehensive independent international investigation into allegations of human rights violations in Kashmir.”
A Commission of Inquiry is one of the UN’s highest-level probes, generally reserved for situations like the conflict in Syria.
The findings come after months of clashes along the Line of Control and repeated ceasefire violations by Pakistan.
The report said the UN body chief met with representatives of both governments following an upsurge of violence in July 2016 after the killing of Hizbul Mujahideen terrorist Burhan Wani by security forces.
On territory under Pakistan’s control, the UN report identifies “a range of human rights abuses,” but notes they “are of a different calibre or magnitude and of a more structural nature.”
Pakistan should “end the misuse of anti-terror legislation to persecute those engaging in peaceful political and civil activities and those who express dissent,” the UN report says.