Lord Nazir criticizes US Kashmir policy
18 October 2003
LAHORE: British parliamentarian Lord Nazir Ahmad has said that the US was dubbing the Kashmiri freedom fighters as terrorists and Irish Republican Army men freedom fighters due to its double standards. He said at a Lahore District Council session at the Jinnah Hall here on Saturday the world had stopped discriminating between the freedom fighters and the terrorists due to a drastic change in its perception after 9-11. Kashmiri freedom fighters were the unfortunate victims of the change in world double standards, he added. Lord Nazir, who is a member of the British House of Lords, said India, Israel and Russia were not described as terrorist states despite murders of Muslims and Christians by the extremists because of their 'positive' image but Pakistan was criticized. Americans supported the IRA freedom struggle in Northern Ireland but described the Kashmiris as terrorists. He said the US and Britain had abused the UN and violated the Geneva conventions by invading Iraq unilaterally. US President Bush was responsible for the loss of UN prestige. Prime Minister Blair's administration had lost its credibility in Britain after the death of weapons inspector Dr Kelly. The Iraqi invasion had started the beginning of the end for the US, he remarked. He expressed the apprehension that Iran and Syria might not be occupied but they would be attacked by the US. He said Pakistan was considered uncivilized because of its image created by the US and Western media due to honour killings, suppression of women and extremist groups but the US was considered a civilized country despite the fact that 660,000 women were raped there every year, 160,000 of them in New York alone. Russia was also considered civilized though 14,000 women were beaten to death there every year on the premise that 'if you love her, you will beat her.' Lord Nazir said the US was having its say in the world because of its domination. Replying to a question about the difference in behaviour of Pakistani and British police with reference to the punishment of Model Town police officials on checking a general's car with tinted glass, he said the Islamabad police stopped the cars of the people coming from abroad in the hope of extorting money. The British police could book everyone, including the son of the prime minister and the daughter of the queen, and they have to appear in the courts. Even he was booked during his tenure as magistrate, he added. He said there were two Muslims in the British House of Commons and four in the House of Lords. The House of Lords has 20 black members but the House of Commons less than 10. The House of Commons has lesser number of Muslim and black members because it was an elected body. The House of Lords has larger number because its members were nominated on merit for scrutinizing the laws framed by the House of Commons.