International Commission for Human Rights   Commission Internationale pour les droits de l'homme   Comisión Internacional por los Derechos Humanos   اللجنة الدولية لحقوق الإنسان   国际人权委员会   Международная комиссия по правам человека

Kashmir Project

On the eve of the 24th Session of the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC), beginning on 9th September 2013 at the Palais des Nations, Geneva - Barrister A Majid Tramboo, Chairman International Commission for Human Rights (ICHR) and the European Director of International Human Rights Association of American Minorities (IHRAAM) has welcomed the report of Alfred de Zayas, Independent Expert for the Promotion of Equitable and Democratic International Order which he has submitted to UNHRC.  The report will be presented by him on 10th September 2013 at the UNHRC’s above session. 

Barrister Tramboo recognised that, in pursuit of his mandate, Mr Alfred de Zayas has undertaken various activities associated with his mandate.  Referring to the expert consultation meeting on global enforcement mechanisms and means to achieve an international order, he pointed out that IHRAAM & ICHR were part of that process.

Expressing his views on the “Recommendation to the Council”, in the above report, Barrister Tramboo overwhelmingly endorsed: “The Independent Expert notes that the self-determination item was a permanent item on the agenda of the Commission on Human Rights.  Bearing in mind that self-determination is a pillar of the Charter and that it has not been achieved by many indigenous peoples, minorities, unrepresented peoples, and peoples under occupation, the council should resume consideration of self-determination as part of items 3 and 4 of its agenda.”

Barrister Tramboo applauded the Independent Expert for recommending: “The Council should consider holding a workshop on self-determination and genuine participation. A democratic deficit is ultimately a deficit in self-determination.”

He emphasised upon the UNHRC members and the civil society to support the Independent Expert recommendation that the Council should consider recommending to the General Assembly to bring specific legal questions concerning self-determination, war, peace, democracy, corporate social responsibility and debt cancellation to the International Court of Justice for advisory opinions. 

In his concluding remarks Barrister Tramboo stated that post-colonial military occupations have resulted in even greater threats to peace, as evidenced in the egregious situations of unrepresented peoples and nations, particularly those suffering ongoing foreign occupations, of which Palestine and Kashmir are classic instances.  These conflicts involve exacerbated human rights violations, war crimes and crimes against humanity, with the peoples concerned facing torture, mass disappearances, extra-judicial killings, and genocide.

Published in Latest News

Four protestors killed for the desecration of Quran and the beating of a local religious preacher in Jammu & Kashmir

 

Indian paramilitary forces fired at protestors resulting in four people killed and around forty members of the protestors wounded. The protest took place in the district Ramban. The reason for the protest was due to the desecration of the Quran and the beating of a local Imam, Molvi Shabir Ahmed.  

 

It is believed that the Indian Border Security Forces (IBSF) forcibly entered into a local mosque at  Gool Gulab Garh, Ramban, Jammu, interupting the Tarraveh prayers. This insult was furthered by the IBSF desecrating the Quran.  Following this disrespectful act towards the Quran, the people of Gool Gulab Garh, Ramban took to the streets and began protesting for what IBSF did. It is believed the protestors went to the IBSF camp and started pelting stones as a matter of protest.  

 

The IBSF responded by firing back at the protestors, clearly the lethal force used was disproportionate towards the demonstrating public.   

 

IBSF’s Inspector General stated that the use of force was as self-defence to stop the protesters from causing harm. It is the routine rhetoric statement issued by the Indian armed forces following such tragic incidents.  

 

After the brutal incident and the protest, mobile and internet access has been shut down and a curfew imposed almost in the entire Jammu & Kashmir. The Kashmiri pro freedom leadership has either been detained in their homes or arrested. 

 

Kashmir has suffered constant conflicts with the Indian forces and repeated curfews which continue to rob the people of Kashmir their right to freedom and self-determination.  

 

International Council for Human Rights, continues to raise concerns as to what happens to the people of Kashmir and how they suffer with repeated & unacceptable violence, torture and  deaths at the hands of Indian Armed Forces deployed in the disputed territory of Jammu & Kashmir.

 

 

 

 

PLEASE SEND APPEALS TO:

 

Manmohan Singh

Prime Minister of India

South Block, Gate No 6

New Delhi - 110 01, India

Fax: +91 11 301 67810

 

Sushilkumar Shinde

Ministry of Home Affairs, 

North Block, Central Secretariat
New Delhi - 110 001. India

Fax: +91 11 230 93750

 

Salman Khurshid

Foreign Minister of India
13, Talkatora Road, New Delhi-110001, India
Fax: +91 11 237 37623

 

Ban Ki-moon

Secretary General
United Nations

New York, 10017, USA

Fax: +1 212 963 4879

 

Navanethem Pillay

United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights

Palais Wilson , 52 rue des Pâquis 

CH-1201 Geneva, Switzerland

Fax: +41 22 917 90 00

 

Christof Heyns

Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions (OHCHR) 

Palais des Nations 

CH-1211 Geneva 10, Switzerland

Fax: +41 22 917 90 00

 

Catherine Ashton

High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy

Rue de la Loi 200

B-1049, Bruxelles, Belgium

Fax : +32 2 298 1290

 

Barbara LOCHBIHLER MEP

Chairwoman, Sub-Committee on Human Rights

Bât. Altiero Spinelli, 08G130

60, rue Wiertz

B-1047 Bruxelles, Belgium

Fax : +32 2 284 9364

 

James Elles MEP

Chairman, All Party Group for Kashmir

Bât. Altiero Spinelli, 13E107

60, rue Wiertz

B-1047 Bruxelles, Belgium

Fax : +32 2 284 9951

 

Graham Watson MEP

Chairman, Delegation for relations with India

Bât. Altiero Spinelli, 13G351

60, rue Wiertz

B-1047 Bruxelles, Belgium

Fax : +32 2 284 9125

 

Charles Tannock MEP

Chairman, Friends of India

Bât. Altiero Spinelli, 14E103

60, rue Wiertz 

B-1047 Bruxelles, Belgium

Fax : +32 2 284 9870

 

BACKGROUND

Since January 1990 there has been a genuine and popular uprising in Jammu & Kashmir for the fulfillment of the promise about the rights of self-determination made by the government of India not only at international level through the United Nations but also through it’s own constitution (under article 253).  The Indian government has responded to the demand for the right to self-determination by the Kashmiri people with an iron fist.  Enforced Disappearances, Torture, Extra-Judicial Execution, Arbitrary Arrest and Rape are common place.  The PSA is one of many laws that have been put in place by the Indian government in Kashmir.  Under this law anybody can be arrested and held for up to two years without trial often moved a considerable distance from their families. Frequently people are re-arrested as soon as they are released after the maximum two year term; often at the prison gates.

 

Thousands of cases of human rights abuses have been lodged at the UN and well over 90,000 deaths have been recorded by credible NGOs since the beginning of the 1990’s. There are 8000 missing person and the European Parliament passed an emergency resolution in July 2008 on nameless and mass graves of Kashmir.

 

 

 

PLEASE SEND APPEALS IMMEDIATELY.  THE NAME OF ICHR CAN BE MENTIONED; HOWEVER LETTERS WRITTEN IN  A PRIVATE AND PERSONAL CAPACITY MAY BE MORE EFFECTIVE.  PLEASE STRESS THAT YOUR CONCERN FOR HUMAN RIGHTS IS NOT POLITICALLY MOTIVATED BUT THAT IT IS BASED THE RIGHTS ENSHRINED IN THE UNIVERSAL DECLARATION OF HUMAN RIGHTS WHICH GRANTS THE RIGHTS TO LIFE, LIBERTY AND SECURITY, DISALLOWING TORTURE AND ARBITRARY DETENTION AND THE RIGHT TO FREEDOM OF ASSEMBLY AND PEACEFUL ASSOCIATION.

 

Published in Urgent Actions

Irfan Ahmad Ganaie and Irshad Ahmad Dar, both residents of Markundal village in Sumbal area, who were killed in army firing in early hours of June 30 in Bandipora district in Kashmir Valley triggering furious protests all over Indian-Held Kashmir.

 

Irfan Ahmed Ganie (19) and Irshad Ahmed Dar (25), both residents of Markundal village in Sumbal were killed on June 30 by Army officers.  Irfan Ahmed Ganie death has been denied by the officers saying they were not involved in the killing of the youth.  The killing was believed to be taken in the early hours of the day with shots being heard at around 3am and the officers being sighted at the scene.  

 

Irshad Ahmed Dar’s killing has been admitted as a forced response to the protests occurring on Sunday morning.  The two deaths has disturbed the atmosphere within Srinagar as shops, banks and other establishments have shut down.

 

With AFSPA still in enactment, the power given to troops for killing remains a controversial law as, such laws oppress the Kashmiri’s people right to freedom and self-determination. International Council for Human Rights is concerned that the draconian laws such as AFSPA are continuously promoting state terrorism by the Indian army and its paramilitary forces, and recent victims of this terror are  Irfan Ahmad Ganaie and Irshad Ahmad Dar.

 

 

 

PLEASE SEND APPEALS TO:

 

Manmohan Singh

Prime Minister of India

South Block, Gate No 6

New Delhi - 110 01, India

Fax: +91 11 301 67810

 

Sushilkumar Shinde

Ministry of Home Affairs, 

North Block, Central Secretariat
New Delhi - 110 001. India

Fax: +91 11 230 93750

 

Salman Khurshid

Foreign Minister of India
13, Talkatora Road, New Delhi-110001, India
Fax: +91 11 237 37623

 

Ban Ki-moon

Secretary General
United Nations

New York, 10017, USA

Fax: +1 212 963 4879

 

Navanethem Pillay

United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights

Palais Wilson , 52 rue des Pâquis 

CH-1201 Geneva, Switzerland

Fax: +41 22 917 90 00

 

Christof Heyns

Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions (OHCHR) 

Palais des Nations 

CH-1211 Geneva 10, Switzerland

Fax: +41 22 917 90 00

 

Catherine Ashton

High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy

Rue de la Loi 200

B-1049, Bruxelles, Belgium

Fax : +32 2 298 1290

 

Barbara LOCHBIHLER MEP

Chairwoman, Sub-Committee on Human Rights

Bât. Altiero Spinelli, 08G130

60, rue Wiertz

B-1047 Bruxelles, Belgium

Fax : +32 2 284 9364

 

James Elles MEP

Chairman, All Party Group for Kashmir

Bât. Altiero Spinelli, 13E107

60, rue Wiertz

B-1047 Bruxelles, Belgium

Fax : +32 2 284 9951

 

Graham Watson MEP

Chairman, Delegation for relations with India

Bât. Altiero Spinelli, 13G351

60, rue Wiertz

B-1047 Bruxelles, Belgium

Fax : +32 2 284 9125

 

Charles Tannock MEP

Chairman, Friends of India

Bât. Altiero Spinelli, 14E103

60, rue Wiertz 

B-1047 Bruxelles, Belgium

Fax : +32 2 284 9870

 

BACKGROUND

Since January 1990 there has been a genuine and popular uprising in Jammu & Kashmir for the fulfillment of the promise about the rights of self-determination made by the government of India not only at international level through the United Nations but also through it’s own constitution (under article 253).  The Indian government has responded to the demand for the right to self-determination by the Kashmiri people with an iron fist.  Enforced Disappearances, Torture, Extra-Judicial Execution, Arbitrary Arrest and Rape are common place.  The PSA is one of many laws that have been put in place by the Indian government in Kashmir.  Under this law anybody can be arrested and held for up to two years without trial often moved a considerable distance from their families. Frequently people are re-arrested as soon as they are released after the maximum two year term; often at the prison gates.

 

Thousands of cases of human rights abuses have been lodged at the UN and well over 90,000 deaths have been recorded by credible NGOs since the beginning of the 1990’s. There are 8000 missing person and the European Parliament passed an emergency resolution in July 2008 on nameless and mass graves of Kashmir.

 

 

 

PLEASE SEND APPEALS IMMEDIATELY.  THE NAME OF ICHR CAN BE MENTIONED; HOWEVER LETTERS WRITTEN IN  A PRIVATE AND PERSONAL CAPACITY MAY BE MORE EFFECTIVE.  PLEASE STRESS THAT YOUR CONCERN FOR HUMAN RIGHTS IS NOT POLITICALLY MOTIVATED BUT THAT IT IS BASED THE RIGHTS ENSHRINED IN THE UNIVERSAL DECLARATION OF HUMAN RIGHTS WHICH GRANTS THE RIGHTS TO LIFE, LIBERTY AND SECURITY, DISALLOWING TORTURE AND ARBITRARY DETENTION AND THE RIGHT TO FREEDOM OF ASSEMBLY AND PEACEFUL ASSOCIATION.

 

Published in Urgent Actions

Joint statement by Barrister A Majid Tramboo, Chairman of International Council for Human Rights (ICHR) and Professor Nazir Ahmad Shawl, Chairman of International Chamber for Peace and Conciliation (ICPC)

In a joint statement issued by Barrister A Majid Tramboo, Chairman of International Commission for Human Rights (ICHR) and Professor Nazir Ahmad Shawl, Chairman of International Chamber for Peace and Conciliation (ICPC) have stated that over the past few months there has been extensive consultation and exchange of views with the Kashmiri leadership and civil society concerning the institutional unification at the international level for the realization of the Kashmiris right to self determination and promotion and protection of their human rights.  Both the leaders have expressed their satisfaction and gratitude for the constructive and encouraging counsel that they received.

With a view to formulate a unified strategy, forward planning and resources, it has been resolved to merge the existing structures both at EU and UK to establish a unified international secretariat at London with a view to continue the work at the United Nations (UN), European Union (EU), Organisation of Islamic Co-operation (OIC), and with the Non-governmental Organisations (NGOs) and civil society.

Barrister Tramboo and Prof. Shawl have emphasized that this change of strategy will not slow down their meaningful work on the Kashmir cause but in fact it is likely to lead to wider lobbying, communication and understanding on the Kashmir issue.   

In the meantime, Chairman of All Party Group for Kashmir in the European Parliament (APGK), James Elles (MEP) held a get together of MEPs and other invited guests in recognition of the work that has been accomplished by APGK and ICHR together at the European Union in particular at the European Parliament.  Mr. Elles while recognising the assistance Barrister Tramboo extended to the APGK for highlighting the Kashmir issue  in the EP stated that together six Global Discourses and eight Kashmir EU Weeks were organised that resulted in unanimously passing various resolutions and reports by the Parliament. Similar views were expressed by other MEPs including Jean Lambert (MEP), Chairperson of the South Asia Delegation, Chris Davies (MEP) and Richard Ashworth (MEP).  Barrister Tramboo commended the work of APGK over the years, articulating that Mr Elles championed the cause of Kashmir within the European Union.  He appealed and hoped that APGK will continue its dedicated work on Kashmir in days to come including in the new Parliament in 2014.  

 

Published in Latest News

International Human Rights Association of American Minorities (IHRAAM) and International Commission for Human Rights (ICHR) today hosted a conference entitled International Day of Innocent Children Victims of Aggression: Children in Conflict - Peace for upcoming Generations. The conference explored the UN applicable mechanisms needed to address injustices to children and reviewed the prevailing situation that accounts for the ongoing abuses. The discussion examined ongoing armed conflicts such as the situation in Indian Held Kashmir, Palestine and Syria, where countless NGOs, agencies and observers have denounced the alarming situation children bear on daily basis as result of displacement, attacks and shortages; as well as disputes such as those entailing the traditional and Grassroots communities from Alaska, where children are constantly being neglected and discriminated due to their identities.

Speakers included Barrister A. Majid Tramboo, Chairman of ICHR and IHRAAM’s Permanent Representative to the UN; Dr. Ariel R. King, President of Ariel Consulting Intl and children human rights advocate; Ms. Lotte Claessens, child protection specialist; Dr. Krishna Ahoojapatel, Permanent Representative of WILPF to the UN; Ambassador Ronald Barnes, Permanent Representative of Indigenous Peoples and Nations Coalition to the UN and Prof. Nazir Shawl, Chairman of International Chamber for Peace and Conciliation.

As Chair and moderator, Barrister M. Tramboo outlined that children are probably the ones who suffer most from conflicts and unlike adults and elders who come to meet war and conflict after a life of relative peace, the impact of conflict affects children indeterminately for the rest of their lives. Barrister Tramboo then echoed the UN Secretary-General’s 2012 report on children and armed conflict, where some abuses in the current ongoing conflicts are so heinous that they represent grave violations of children’s rights under the UN Security Council Resolution 1612 that establishes six grave violations of children’s rights. He enumerated them as: recruitment and use of children, killing and maiming of children, rape and other grave sexual violence, abductions, attacks on schools and hospitals, and denial of humanitarian access to children. Such situations currently exist in conflict zones such as Indian Held Kashmir, Syria and Palestine-Israel.

Dr. Ariel R. King appreciated the holding of the conference and said that usually human rights are generally discussed from an intellectual point of view, nevertheless when dealing with human rights we must appeal to the heart and to feelings. She then shared a truly comprehensive and inclusive video presentation on children in conflict and the direct and indirect impact of conflict with all participants. “Shared responsibility also demands action” she added. Her associate, Ms. Elena Allendorfer encouraged all participants not to lose motivation to keep on fighting and defending the rights entitled to us by international law, especially not to give up on defending the rights of children who do not have a voice.

Dr. Krishna Ahoojapatel analyzed the developments on international law and highlighted that on most legislation women and children were always treated as one collective, but when it came to the ratifications, the states always responded differently. She classified the situation of conflict in four different categories: those perpetrated within the household, the one related to labor and exploitation, the one derived from war and terrorism and the one she called “collateral damage”, qualification she regarded as incongruous and deceitful.  She affirmed that the international community fails to implement all the legislation that has been made during decades; illustratively, she reported that after the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child and its ratification, the child labor has increased worldwide. She declared that “the image or murder and killings does not affect us anymore, we have seen it so much we are numb”. 

Ms. Lotte Claessens thanked the panel for the opportunity and started by outlining shocking figures such as:  by 2011, there were 200 million people directly affected by disasters, including 100 million children; the number of civilian victims in conflicts has risen from 5% to over 90%, out of which at least half are children and that currently 1.5 billion children live in conflict-affected or fragile states. When addressing Child Protection Violations, Ms. Claesssen established several forms: family separation, child labour, the use of children in armed forces or groups and sexual violence. She then elaborated on her on-field work experience in Indian Held Kashmir by outlining the major issues affecting children, amongst which are: decades of violence, conflict, insecurity and instability; high levels of psychosocial distress among their communities; continuous risk to physical harm, exposition to gender-based violence and an overall weak (social and legal) protection system.

Prof. Nazir Shawl affirmed that when a war or conflict erupts: “the rules by which we adhere to no longer apply”. He stated that both children and women have historically borne the brunt of wars, thus places where conflict rages, sexual violence against women and children is not only an individual but a collective wound; he highlighted that the rape of a girl or a woman is seen as an attack on their family and their culture which ignites the conflicts. Moreover “no peace treaty to date has formally recognized the existence of child combatants”, he emphasized, to which he added “the exploitation of children as soldiers persists in many armed conflicts because child recruiters are rarely held accountable; most child victims of violence and sexual abuse are girls, but boys are also affected both directly or indirectly”.

Ambassador Ronald Barnes gave two examples of conflict: landmines and depleted uranium from bombs, but states that aggression does not only include violence. Children can also be harmed in non-conflict situations. The United Nations adopted resolutions in 1949 calling for education to be in the Indigenous languages. Aggression comes in different forms for peoples of non-self-governing territories for peoples under colonial domination. The concept of aggression was first used to prosecute Nazi War Criminals under Nuremberg principles. The International Law Commission expanded those principles in 1947. The General Assembly adopted the definition of aggression under resolution 3314 (XXIX) in 1974. Damage can occur to the language and the culture, and the livelihood of the peoples.  He used the example of the Residential school system in Canada as another example of aggression and harm to children.

 

 

After a round of questions, and for the final remarks, Barrister Tramboo expressed his gratitude to all distinguished guests, and gave the honor to close the dialogue to Dr. Ahoojapatel who finally emphasized the necessity to read the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child and the UN Charter and to advocate for it to be rightly implemented, so that the international community reaches its goals.

Published in Latest News
The 8th Annual Kashmir Week "Reconciliation: Kashmir, India and Pakistan" in the European Parliament commenced from the 27th of May 2013.  The event is organised by ICHR - Kashmir Project under the sponsorship of Nikki Sinclaire MEP.

 

 

 

Press Conference:

In preparation for the inauguration reception on the 29th of May 2013, Nikki Sinclaire MEPBarrister A. Majid Tramboo, Prof. Nazir Shawl and Frank Schwalba-Hothheld a press conference in the press room of the European Parliament.

 

Addressing the press conference Sinclaire MEP stressed that the Kashmir dispute need to be addressed by politicians and the reason that it is not getting any media is probably the politics of convenience. She expressed that she will continue bringing the Kashmiri issue to the political agenda of the EU.

 

Barrister Tramboo considered the European Parliament’s recent Resolution as a commitment of the European community in support of the human rights advocacy in Jammu and Kashmir. He stated that the European Parliament must push for a dialogue between India and Pakistan involving the leadership of Kashmir for progress to genuine reconciliation and realization of Kashmiris rights to self-determination.

 

Professor Shawl stressed on the importance of role that can be played by the Kashmiri communities in United Kingdom and in Europe in influencing the politicians to tackle on the Kashmir dispute. He also congratulated ICHR and the European Parliament for the recent Resolution on the hanging of Afzal Guru. 

 

Mr. Shwalba-Hoth said that the European Union must play the role of an honest broker in the Kashmir issue and to bring Kashmir to the EU’s political agenda. He highlighted the work undertaken by ICHR for the past decade and congratulated Barrister Tramboo for the recent achievements.

 

The Inauguration of Kashmir EU Week:

The official inauguration of the 8th Kashmir EU Week in the European Parliament took place in the galaxy of MEPs, officials from both the European Commission and the European Council, representatives from embassies and missions, NGO and civil society representatives and staffers of the European Institutions. Welcoming the guests,  Barrister A. Majid Tramboo elaborated on the main focus of the exhibition which is to bring reconciliation between Kashmir, India and Pakistan and to end the human rights abuses in Indian Held Kashmir. He Highlighted the decade of work undertaken by the ICHR setting the trends to effectively and meaningfully to continue to keep the Kashmir issue on the EU's radar. 

 

Barrister Tramboo articulated that our partnership in Europe has always paid dividends and the clear example of this is the Norwegian recent debate on Kashmir lobbied by the Kashmiri Scandinavian Council.

 

 

Hosting the reception, Nikki Sinclaire MEP stressed on her political convictions and on her commitment to the Kashmiris and their situation, since as citizens we must not only talk about social responsibility, we must demonstrate it. She stated that after her visits to different regions such as Tunisia, Gaza, Bahrain and Afghanistan, she is convinced  of the urgency to implement, defend and protect fundamental values and human rights. She stated that since elected in 2009, she has supported the right of the Kashmiri people to self determination, since it is a basic human right. She finally stated that this initiatives show there is a global commitment to speak out against injustice and repression.

Prof. Nazir Shawl said that the European Parliament recognises the dangerous potential of the 65 year Kashmir dispute both as a threat to security, stability and peace in South Asia, and also an impediment in the economic development of the region. He pleaded for an inclusive structured and sustained dialogue between India, Pakistan and Kashmiris. He declared that the self-determination of the people of Jammu & Kashmir is non-negotiable. 

Eija Riitta Korhola MEP highlighted the pressing issue of the death penalty in India and expressed her satisfaction on the recent European Parliament Resolution of Afzal Guru’s secret execution. She further emphasized on the urgency to establish the moratorium on death penalty in India and stressed that the body of Afzal Guru must be returned to his wife and family in order to exercise his religious rites. 

Jean Lambert MEP stated that Kashmiri people must have the right to address and decide on their future. She stated that since there is a new government in Pakistan and there are upcoming elections in India, opportunities arise to advance towards reconciliation and the peace for Kashmir.

Phil Bennion MEP highlighted the need to place the Kashmir issue further in the political agenda, especially within the EU institutions. He declared that  a sustainable and just peace settlement can only be reached by involving the people of Kashmir in the Indo-Pakistan dialogue, which is why he support a plebiscite as a key part of a peace process.

Tunne Kelam MEP stated that Kashmir conflict is the longest ongoing conflict in history and the European Parliament should address the grave human rights violation in the area.

Krisztina Morvai MEP highlighted the deterioration of women’s situation in Kashmir as a result of the conflict and stressed the European Parliament to address these abuses. She also wrote a letter to the UN Representative on Sexual Violence in Conflict about these abuses.

Continuing the call of uniting both parts of Kashmir, Barrister Tramboo along with all invited MEPs expressed their commitment to the Kashmir plight by approaching the model of the Chakoti bridge and joining hands in the hope to reach a peaceful solution to the Kashmir conflict. 

Published in Latest News

International Council for Human Rights (ICHR) - Kashmir Project has strongly welcomed the European Parliament’s Resolution on the Execution of Afzal Guru and its Implications in Indian Held Kashmir that was debated, voted and unanimously passed at the Plenary session in Strasbourg.

 

The Chairman of ICHR - Kashmir Project, Barrister A. Majid Tramboo described the European Parliament’s Resolution as a commitment of the European community in support of the human rights advocacy in Jammu and Kashmir.

 

Barrister Tramboo expressed his satisfaction for condemning the government of India’s secret execution of Afzal Guru by the European Parliament, which is articulated in the resolution in the following terms - “Condemns the Government of India’s execution in secret of Afzal Guru at New Delhi’s Tihar Jail on 9 February 2013, in opposition to the worldwide trend towards the abolition of capital punishment, and expresses its regret that Afzal Guru’s wife and other family members were not informed of his imminent execution and burial;”

 

He equally deeply appreciated the sentiments of the European Parliament for adopting the following crucial paragraphs:

 

“Calls on the Government of India to return Afzal Guru’s body to his family;” 

 

Regrets the deaths of three young Kashmiris following the protests against Afzal Guru’s execution; calls on the security forces to exercise restraint in the use of force against peaceful protesters;” 

 

“Calls on the Government of India, as a matter of urgency, not to approve any execution order in the future;”

 

Barrister Tramboo emphasized “The Resolution on the execution of Afzal Guru responded to the demands of the Kashmiri people and held the government of India accountable to their cruel execution of Guru.” He added “The resolution will contribute to a better understanding of the plight of the people of Jammu & Kashmir.”

 

“The European Union, in its engagement with India, should continue demanding for more freedom of expression in Kashmir and the cultivation of a more enabling environment for human rights defenders and political leaders that allows them to operate without fear of harassment and/ or violence, including APHC leaders for their rightful demand of the right to self-determination,” Barrister Tramboo further stated. 

 

It maybe recalled that ICHR has, with its intense lobbying, persuaded various political groups and a considerable number of Members of the European Parliament to introduce a motion for an Urgency Resolution on the secret hanging of Afzal Guru.

 

Barrister Tramboo has commended the work undertaken by the members of the European Parliament particularly Eija-Riitta Korhola, Cristian Dan Preda, Filip Kaczmarek, Bernd Posselt, Philipe Boulland, Jaroslaw Walesa, Tunne Kelam, Roberta Angelilli, Elena Basescu, Anna Zaborska, Sergio Silvestris, Giovanni La Via, Eduard Kukan, Sari Essayah, Jean Roatta, Petri Sarvamaa, Monica Macovei, Mairead Mc Guinness and Krzysztof Lisek, Karima Delli, Mitro Repo, Marie-Christine Vergiat, Bernd Posselt, Joanna Senyszyn, Kristiina Ojuland, Phil Bennion, James Elles and Jean Lambert as well as all other members who supported and signed the resolution.

Published in Latest News
Continuing its advocacy work on the execution of Afzal Guru and its implications in Indian Held Kashmir, ICHR has, with its intense lobbying, persuaded various political groups and considerable number of Members of the European Parliament to introduce a motion for an Urgency Resolution on the secret hanging of Afzal Guru. The above motion has now been proposed  and it would come up for discussion and vote in the European Parliament’s upcoming plenary session on Thursday, the 23rd May in Strasbourg.

Barrister A. Majid Tramboo, Chairman of ICHR stated that “The resolution, which is currently entitled The Execution of Afzal Guru and its Implications strongly condemns states that still undertake execution while noting that India refused to accept the recommendation of the UN regarding a moratorium on the death penalty that was put forward by numerous states.  The resolution also notes that Guru was sentenced under the now defunct Prevention of Terrorism Act that was repealed in 2004 as it was widely seen to be open to abuse and in strict violation of numerous human rights treaties to which India is a signatory, and Urges the EU uses all its available tools of diplomacy and cooperation with the government of India for the return of Afzal Guru’s body to his wife and family for the decent burial pursuant to his religious rites ”

This follows the work previously undertaken by ICHR on the issue of Guru's hanging, included in the campaign were communications to the OHCHR, Vice President of the European Commission, Catherine Ashton and President of the European Parliament Martin Schulz. Both Vice President Ashton and President Schulz later condemned the execution.

Barrister Tramboo views these steps as positive measures for human rights defenders and hopes that it will inspire further action from European leaders on the state of affairs in Indian Held Kashmir.

Barrister Tramboo commended Mr. Ali Shah Nawaz Khan, Executive Director of Kashmiri Scandinavian Council who contributed to bring about the proposed Afzal Guru Urgency Resolution. He has also worked to persuade the members of the Norwegian Parliament to have an interpolation in the Norwegian Parliament on the Guru hanging on 23rd of May.

ICHR will continue bringing to light the human rights violations and commends European leaders who have already taken a stand for the people of Kashmir. 
Published in News

International Commission for Human Rights (ICHR)- Kashmir Project hosted an interactive dialogue and roundtable discussion on the International Day of Families entitled “Plight of Divided Families in Jammu and Kashmir” at its premises in Rue Belliard, Brussels. The roundtable explored the prevailing situation and approach of the international community towards the situation of families separated by armed conflict, namely those divided by the Ceasefire Line in Jammu and Kashmir. The event addressed the long existing impediments families have to reunite and see each other after years of being apart, and also posited the urgency of ensuring the human rights in the region, since family is the core element of society. 

The wide range of participants included personnel from the European Parliament and the Brussels political scene, UN representatives, NGO representatives, academics and other interested parties.

Speakers included  Barrister A. Majid Tramboo, Chairman of ICHR and IHRAAM’s Permanent Representative to the UN, Prof. Patrick Dolan, UNESCO Chair and Director -NUI Galway, Prof. Melissa Rancourt, Founder of Greenlight for Girls & the Head of Faculty -Boston University and Mr. Frank Schwalba-Hoth, Political Strategist and former Member of the European Parliament, who chaired the session.

Professor Melissa Rancourt, stated that on the topic of divided families and the impact of borders she faces two different perspectives, the first as Head of Faculty for Boston University Brussels and the second as founder of an international organization, Greenlight for Girls; within the university environment she often speaks about borders and how they impact their work and society, borders separate people by way of education, caste, wealth, poverty, language, politics religion and of course geography. She elaborated on borders describing them as imaginary lines sometimes mentally drawn but also most of the times physically placed, either by negotiation or imposition which emphasize differences in culture, language and belief. These borders, she said, become concrete barriers that limit potential, prevent opportunity and most unfortunately, divide families. She then described some of the regional cases she has worked with and studied where borders have brought families and whole societies apart.

Professor Patrick Dolan approached the subject specifying the importance of family as a human right. He shared with the participants the different features family policy comprises. Regrettably the problem of enforced family separation and its negative impact is not a recent event but one that has been going on by decades in all areas of the world, including the Kashmir region.  When it comes to the upbringing of children, the access to family support and a social environment becomes vital and a gateway to full integration in society; moreover, social empathy in children is achieved through role models, found within nuclear and extended. He emphasized on the role of family in any individual’s live, namely, that families are the greatest source of help and stress, being overall far more helpful since family is strongly connected to recovering from life events, such as those that take place in almost daily basis in the Kashmir conflict. The prominence of family for upcoming generations and the construction of human social capital is centered in its provision of health, both physical and mental; support in active learning; safety from accidental and intentional harm; economic security and security in the immediate and wider physical environment. 

In his opening remarks, Barrister A. Majid Tramboo referring to the elections in Pakistan, congratulated the newly Prime Minister elect of Pakistan, Mian Nawaz Sharif who has in his past two terms put forward the Kashmir issue first; he then emphasized on the important role the new government can have in the Kashmir issue and for a more democratic path in Pakistan. Following, he stressed on the importance of the International Day of Families as it makes people remember the plight of divided families in Jammu and Kashmir who are facing for more than 65 years the impediments that hinder them from meeting their relatives across the ceasefire line. He stated that there are many factors which lead to a family’s division, and it is not only politics that divide families, but also that families themselves divide families.

When addressing how it is that the states divide families, he assesses there are 3 major bedrocks in relation to the situation in Kashmir, which are the following:

1) The historical view of the division of Kashmiri families, and how the families of Jammu and Kashmir can’t see each other in  normal circumstances

2) The current reality where people have been continuously displaced because of the conflict in Kashmir, being the displacement internal or external. 

3) The existence of a conflict in an area, which is then targeted by the government that decides to tackle it down, leading to the detention of family members and the voluntary displacement in the search for safety, which thereafter results in the division of families for years.

Barrister Tramboo then stated that the division has a devastating impact on families since the family’s communication and bonds are enormously damaged particularly in the situation of Kashmir. This point was carried further by bringing to the floor different testimonies of Kashmiris that have been victims of the implementation of the ceasefire line between India and Pakistan. Barrister Tramboo stressed the urgency to unite the Kashmiri families by referring to the European Parliament report presented by Baroness Nicholson of Winterbourned which stresses on the points 36, 37, 39 and 40 the urge to reunite families through the opening of 5 crossing points, although he mentioned the bureaucratic obstacles that the crossing involves. Barrister Tramboo noted that some of the points of the reports have not been implemented and hence called upon the European Union to take factual action into the reunification of Kashmiri families and the complementing aid that the fostering of civil society, trade and tourism would bring to the region.

Concluding the roundtable, the Chair Mr Frank Schwalba-Hoth, further elaborated on the situation in Kashmir, where human rights are systematically being neglected, tearing families apart and endowing future generations with unstable and unsafe societies. Mr. Schwalba-Hoth thanked the organization for bringing this reality to the attention of the Brussels’ political scene and thanked the participants for attending the event.

 

Published in Latest News

Marking the International Day for Mine Awareness and Assistance in Mine Action, International Council for Human Rights (ICHR) calls for a Kashmir free of landmines, and reaffirms its commitment to raise the issue of landmines which have been laid down by the Indian military and paramilitary forces at various parts of Kashmir.

A total of 161 nations are party to the Mine Ban Treaty, which was opened for signature in December 1997 and entered into force on March 1, 1999. The treaty comprehensively prohibits antipersonnel landmines and requires their clearance and assistance to victims. 

Barrister A. Majid Tramboo, the Chairman of ICHR-Kashmir Project urged the government of India to join the Mine Ban Treaty. “More than 6,000 families and some 3,500 acres of agriculture land alone in Chamb area in Jammu region are mine-affected.” said the Barrister. 

Barrister Tramboo stated that “a huge population at various parts of Kashmir along the Ceasefire Line continue to be caught in a death trap of landmines since 2002, suffering the burden of a war that was never fought. The government of India cannot afford to remain ignorant of the huge humanitarian and development impact of a rising landmines in Kashmir. The Indian government has a responsibility to undertake steps and to join the Mine Ban Treaty before further lives are lost."

The Indian Army deployed an estimated two million mines in Indian Held Kashmir in Operation Parakram. This was probably the most extensive use of antipersonnel mines anywhere in the world since the Mine Ban Treaty was negotiated and first singed in 1997.

Published in Latest News
Page 1 of 3
Close Panel

Login

You may use your ICHR staff login or ICHR website registered user login to access.

Welcome to ICHR website - registered user interface

follow us