rabble blogs are the personal pages of some of Canada's most insightful progressive activists and commentators. All opinions belong to the writer; however, writers are expected to adhere to our guidelines. We welcome new bloggers -- contact us for details.

Canada remains silent on Indian colonization of Kashmir

Please chip in to support more articles like this. Support rabble.ca for as little as $5 per month!

MP Iqra Khalid during the public forum on October 22 to consider Canada's policy in regard to Kashmir. Image: Screenshot of Facebook video

Kashmir is caught up in one of the world's longest outstanding international conflicts.

Canada has a long history in regard to Kashmir.

In 1948, the people of Kashmir were promised a plebiscite to determine their own future in UN Security Council Resolution 47. Canada's UN representative Andrew McNaughton took the lead in this resolution as president of the UN Security Council at that time. 

Canada's first peacekeeping mission, even before the implementation of the UN official system, occurred in 1948 in Kashmir.

Over seven decades later Kashmir remains internationally disputed territory.

Since August 5, 2019, India has illegally annexed the territory, downgraded its status and put the Valley of Kashmir under siege. The world's most militarized zone is under a serious threat of demographic change that is aimed at altering the final resolution of the disputed territory.

With the introduction of the new domicile law by the government of India on March 31, 2020, the project of intentional demographic change, in clear violation of international law, is underway. There is urgency for the international community to intervene as the Indian government claims it has already issued close to two million Domicile certificates to non-Kashmiris, a step that has grave implications for the final resolution of the issue of Kashmir.

Despite this, Canada has remained troublingly silent about Kashmir, although three petitions, by Liberal MP Yasmin Ratansi, NDP MP Scott Duvall and Conservative MP Marilyn Gladu were presented recently in Parliament.

Twenty-five Canadian civil society organizations hosted a public forum on October 22 to consider Canada's policy in regard to Kashmir.

The session included a stellar lineup of lawyers, academics, authors and activists, and offered an overview of the long-standing conflict, which India's current Hindu nationalist government has escalated.

The panel explored the history of the conflict in light of international law; human rights situation and issues of impunity; Hindu nationalism project and the colonization of Kashmir; geopolitical perspectives in light of China's involvement; and accountability and India foreign policy.

Guest speakers included Haley Duschinski, associate professor of anthropology and graduate director of the Center for Law, Justice and Culture at Ohio University. She discussed human rights, militarization, impunity and the ongoing siege of Indian illegally occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IIOJK).

Other panelists included attorney Imraan Mir, co-founder of the Kashmir Law and Justice Project, Malavika Kasturi, associate professor of South Asian history at the University of Toronto, Siddiq Wahid, scholar-in-residence at the Centre for Public Affairs and Critical Theory at Shiv Nadar University, and Azeezah Kanji, a legal and academic writer.

A recording of the forum can be watched here.

Karen Rodman is director of Just Peace Advocates, a Canadian based international human rights organization.

Image: Screenshot of Facebook video​

Thank you for reading this story…

More people are reading rabble.ca than ever and unlike many news organizations, we have never put up a paywall – at rabble we’ve always believed in making our reporting and analysis free to all, while striving to make it sustainable as well. Media isn’t free to produce. rabble’s total budget is likely less than what big corporate media spend on photocopying (we kid you not!) and we do not have any major foundation, sponsor or angel investor. Our main supporters are people and organizations -- like you. This is why we need your help. You are what keep us sustainable.

rabble.ca has staked its existence on you. We live or die on community support -- your support! We get hundreds of thousands of visitors and we believe in them. We believe in you. We believe people will put in what they can for the greater good. We call that sustainable.

So what is the easy answer for us? Depend on a community of visitors who care passionately about media that amplifies the voices of people struggling for change and justice. It really is that simple. When the people who visit rabble care enough to contribute a bit then it works for everyone.

And so we’re asking you if you could make a donation, right now, to help us carry forward on our mission. Make a donation today.

Comments

We welcome your comments! rabble.ca embraces a pro-human rights, pro-feminist, anti-racist, queer-positive, anti-imperialist and pro-labour stance, and encourages discussions which develop progressive thought. Our full comment policy can be found here. Learn more about Disqus on rabble.ca and your privacy here. Please keep in mind:

Do

  • Tell the truth and avoid rumours.
  • Add context and background.
  • Report typos and logical fallacies.
  • Be respectful.
  • Respect copyright - link to articles.
  • Stay focused. Bring in-depth commentary to our discussion forum, babble.

Don't

  • Use oppressive/offensive language.
  • Libel or defame.
  • Bully or troll.
  • Post spam.
  • Engage trolls. Flag suspect activity instead.