Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif takes the floor at the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) and makes a speech far more direct than most in the audience expect. “Since 1947, the Kashmir dispute has remained unresolved. [The] UN [United Nations] Security Council resolutions have remained unimplemented. Three generations of Kashmiris have only seen broken promises and brutal oppression. Over 100,000 have died in their struggle for self-determination. This is the most persistent failure of the United Nations,” he states.
This is not the only time in recent weeks that Pakistan has raised the Kashmir issue. On October 22, 2015, when Sharif meets President Barack Obama at the White House, the K word makes a conspicuous entry into their joint statement: “The leaders emphasised the importance of a sustained and resilient dialogue process between the two neighbors aimed at resolving all outstanding territorial and other disputes, including Kashmir, through peaceful means and working together to address mutual concerns of India and Pakistan regarding terrorism.”
India’s reaction has been predictably dismissive to this renewed vigour in Pakistan’s pursuit of Kashmir. “India has always desired resolution of all issues with Pakistan bilaterally through dialogue and peaceful means,” is how a spokesman of India’s Ministry of External Affairs reacts to the joint statement issued after the Sharif-Obama meeting. The curt rejection of suggestions that outsiders may have a role in the resolution of the Kashmir issue is quite obvious in the spokesman’s rejoinder.