India and Pakistan are expected to argue on the Kashmir issue at the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva on Tuesday.
Pakistan’s foreign minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi will be heading the delegation and he tweeted that Islamabad would “speak definitively” at the 42nd session on the alleged “atrocities in Kashmir”.
He would make the statement around noon (3.30 pm IST) that is expected to focus on the Jammu and Kashmir situation after India scrapped Article 370 which gave special status to the state.
The Indian delegation is expected to make the statement some hours later and will have the “right to reply”. The Indian side will be led by a secretary from the Ministry of External Affairs and will also include Ajay Bisaria, who was the High Commissioner in Islamabad.
On Monday, UN high commissioner for human rights Michelle Bachelet, in her opening address appealed to India to “ease the current lockdown” in Jammu and Kashmir”. She said her office was receiving reports on the human rights situation on both sides of the Line of Control and she was “deeply concerned about the impact of recent actions by the Government of India on the human rights of Kashmiris, including restrictions on internet communications and peaceful assembly, and the detention of local political leaders and activists”.
Her remarks were welcomed by Qureshi and Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan, who called on the UNHRC to set up an independent investigation commission to probe alleged rights abuses.
There was no immediate response to Bachelet’s remarks from Indian officials.