Statement by Permanent Representative of Pakistan at the Security Council open debate on "Peace and Security through preventive diplomacy: a common objective to all the principal organs of the United Nations (16 November 2021)

Mr. President,

May I first congratulate you and the Mexican Presidency for skillfully guiding the Council and for convening this debate on preventive diplomacy.

We also thank the Secretary-General and the Presidents of the Assembly, ECOSOC and ICJ for their informative briefings.

Mr. President,

We are living in dangerous times marked by the unilateral use or threat of force, foreign interventions, foreign occupation, the suppression of legitimate freedom struggles, as in Jammu and Kashmir; the resurgence of the ideologies of hate - fascism, racism, anti-Semitism and Islamophobia; growing poverty, inequality and environmental degradation; rising global tensions, proliferating military alliances and a destabilizing and dangerous nuclear and conventional arms race.

Addressing the root causes of conflicts and disputes must be the principal modality for preventive diplomacy. The General Assembly, the Economic and Social Council, the ICJ and the Peace-building Commission - all have important roles in addressing the root causes of conflict, especially a conflict between nuclear-armed States.

In the final analysis, however, it is the Security Council which must utilize its primary authority under the Charter to secure the just and peaceful settlement of conflicts and disputes in accordance with its own resolutions and decisions.

Mr. President,

For the past two years, Pakistan has repeatedly drawn the attention of the Security Council and the Secretary-General to the grave and ever-present threat to international peace and security posed by the conflict over Jammu and Kashmir. There is considerable and credible evidence that human rights are being massively violated in the Indian-occupied parts of Jammu and Kashmir. These violations have escalated sharply after the unilateral measures taken by India on and after 5 August 2019 to forcibly annex occupied Jammu and Kashmir and change its demography in violation of the UN Security Council resolutions which prescribe a UN-supervised plebiscite by the people of Jammu and Kashmir to determine the State's final disposition. These actions constitute grave violations of international law, including the Geneva Conventions and could amount to war crimes and crimes against humanity.

Three wars have been fought over Jammu and Kashmir. Another war was narrowly averted in February 2019 due to Pakistan's exercise of self-restraint. Despite the revival of the 2003 ceasefire, threats against Pakistan and the repression in Kashmir have not abated. A conflict could have catastrophic consequences for South Asia and the world.

It should be a high priority for the Security Council to prevent such a conflict by promoting a just and peaceful resolution of the Jammu and Kashmir dispute in accordance with its own resolutions. It should be a high priority for the Secretary General to fully utilize his broad authority under the Charter to promote such a fair and peaceful resolution of the dispute and end the massive human rights violations taking place in Indian-occupied Kashmir. That, surely, is the essence of preventive diplomacy, envisaged in the UN Charter. No party should have the ability to veto the exercise of the endeavours of the Security Council or the Secretary-General for conflict resolution.

I thank you.