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Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardarion Saturday raked up the Kashmir issue during his address on the country’s Resolution Day and termed it as one of the reasons for instability in the region. Speaking at the Pakistan Resolution Day Grand Parade here, Zardari said: “In our region, one of the main reasons for instability is the Indian illegal occupation of Jammu and Kashmir. We condemn the brutalities, human rights violations carried out by the Indian government against innocent unarmed Kashmiri people.”

“I want to tell the Kashmiris that Pakistan will always stand by them in their just struggle against tyranny,” he added. “The key to durable peace in South Asia is the resolution of the dispute in accordance with the United Nations Security Council Resolutions. Pakistan, on its part, stands committed to extending all kinds of moral and diplomatic support until the oppressed people get their right to self-determination,” he said.

The day started with a 31-gun salute in the federal capital and 21-gun salute in the provincial capitals, followed by the grand military parade, featuring contingents of the three armed forces and other security forces conducting the march past, while fighter planes presented aerobatic maneuvers. Scouts from Gilgit-Baltistan (GB) also took part in the grand parade for the first time.

Making use of the event, Zardari touched upon internal political disputes between various political parties, calling all stakeholders to seek a resolution to the political instability through dialogue. “I call upon all political parties to set aside all political differences and work together for the nation’s progress and well-being,” he said. Talking about the persistent threat of terrorism, Zardari said, “Pakistan is a peace-loving country and a responsible nuclear state who wants good relations with all its neighbors,” adding that the country’s desire for peace should not be taken as its weakness.

“However, let me make it clear that we will not compromise on our sovereignty. Our nation and armed forces are always ready to respond to any aggression at all time. We will not tolerate any efforts of terrorists or any group to de-stabilise our country. Today’s parade is a reminder of the country’s unity, strength and pride,” he said. Dignitaries attended the parade from Saudi Arabia, China, Turkey, Azerbaijan and others. It is said that such events are an opportunity for Pakistan to bring up the India mention and use it to seek international intervention for the Kashmir issue. It would not be wrong to state that Pakistan’s efforts to attract global attention on the Kashmir issue has not yielded results as none has shown the intent to intervene into the matter and have called on both parties to find a resolve to the dispute through dialogue and table talks. While Pakistan’s President expressed his optimism towards overcoming the towering economic challenges the country faces; many believe that the current government setup may just be too weak to handle the economic challenges and that department too, may just fall into the laps of the powerful military establishment, which is much much more powerful today then it was in the past.