Bengaluru: It was a big diplomatic victory for India and a flop show for China and Pakistan at the United Nations. 

Both countries failed to rake up the Kashmir issue at the UN. The intention of both China and Pakistan was to embarrass India on the international stage, but their efforts were thwarted, thanks to the master moves of the Indian diplomats.

The official response:

Syed Akbaruddin, the Indian envoy to the UN, said that China got a stinging response, when it raised Kashmir Act at a closed door informal consultation of the UN Security Council. Today at the UN, our flag is flying high, he also said.

He further added that those who launched a false flag effort got a stinging response from our many friends, Syed Akbaruddin also said. We once again saw an effort by one member state of the UN fail in plain view of all others. We are happy that neither alarmist scenario painted by the representatives of Pakistan nor any of the baseless allegations made repeatedly by representatives of Pakistan in the UN fora were found to be credible, the Indian envoy in the UN said.

Isolating China:

South block officials that MyNation spoke with said that China was left isolated. There were 14 members of the body and China failed to impress upon them the concerns raised on the Kashmir issue.

Diplomats present pointed out that the issue should be resolved bilaterally and the Kashmir issue was a domestic affair. France made it aptly clear that the issue must be solved bilaterally. The position has not changed and we make it clear, France also said. A request of a UNSC member to raise the Kashmir issue once again has been noted, but it would oppose it like it did on the previous occasion, France further said.

While isolating China and Pakistan, the members said that Kashmir is an internal matter. 

After the meeting, Chinese Ambassador, Zhang Jun said that there was a meeting on Jammu and Kashmir. The foreign minister of Pakistan wrote letters to the Security Council asking it to pay attention to the current situation in Jammu and Kashmir. I am sure that the meeting will help both parties understand the risk of further escalation and encourage them to approach each other and have a dialogue, Jun also said.

The ploy:

The plan by Pakistan and China was to raise this issue and time it with the visit of Pakistan’s foreign minister, Shah Mehmood Quresh, to the United States. Pakistan was expecting a strong statement from the UN and wanted to highlight the same in the United States.

The move was also aimed at negating the successes in Kashmir. It may be recalled that 17 foreign envoys including one from the United States had visited Jammu and Kashmir last week.

The gradual lifting of curbs, the release of several detainees and also the visit by the MPs from the European Parliament are some of the many successes in Kashmir. Security officials have also noted that there is a marked improvement in the security situation in Jammu and Kashmir. These developments have not gone down well with Pakistan, which has been trying to project that everything is wrong in Kashmir. It decided to once again approach its all weather friend China to rake up the issue at the UN, so that it could drum up the same during the US visit.

While Qureshi would be visiting the US, Pakistan Army chief, General Qamar Bajwa has been reaching out to Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. Any statement from the UN would have come as a shot in the arm for Pakistan, but the bid failed.

Behind the scenes:

Vietnam currently holds the presidency of the UN Security Council for this month. Islamabad issued a fresh letter to Vietnam on the Kashmir issue. 

Along with Pakistan, Beijing made a fresh effort to make Kashmir as the top subject of discussion during the informal meeting that was held on Wednesday night. 

However, Indian officials worked the diplomatic channels and ensured that the issue was not considered. This was an attempt by Pakistan to revive the December 2019 bid on the same issue. Back then too, the attempts had failed and the UN Security Council did not take up the letter after India made a strong push back with the help of friends such as the UN and France.

This was in fact the third attempt by China since the abrogation of Article 370 on August 5, 2019. Last month too, India, with the help of France, US and Russia foiled China’s attempt to discuss the Kashmir issue at the closed meeting of the UNSC. Following the abrogation of Article 370, most countries have maintained that Kashmir is India’s internal matter.