United Nations: The UN Military Observer Group investigating Pakistani claims of firing by India along the border in Jammu and Kashmir has no conclusions to share as of now but could file reports on its observations, the UN chief's deputy spokesperson has said.
“There are no conclusions to share at this stage...at this stage, there's nothing to report back, but, of course, it will file reports, if necessary, on the work it's seen,” UN chief Ban Ki-moon's deputy spokesperson Farhan Haq told reporters here yesterday.
Haq was responding to a question on whether the UN Military Observer Group in India and Pakistan (UNMOGIP) officials, who began a “fact finding mission” to ascertain Pakistani claims that India resorted to firing on the border and the Line of Control (LoC) in Jammu and Kashmir last week, had filed a report on their investigation.
Haq said if one or the other parties asks the UN observer mission tasked with monitoring the ceasefire line between India and Pakistan to deploy and observe a complaint about a ceasefire violation, UNMOGIP follows up on that and “that's what it's doing”.
Pakistan had last week lodged a complaint against India with the UNMOGIP for “ceasefire violations” along the LoC in Jammu and Kashmir.
Earlier this week, UNMOGIP officers visited the affected villages near Sialkot, the Pakistan military said. India has been maintaining that the UNMOGIP has outlived its utility and is irrelevant after the Simla Agreement and the consequent establishment of the Line of Control (LoC).
Following heightened tension along their border resulting in casualties on both sides, India had last week warned Pakistan of an “effective and forceful” response to unprovoked firing and cross-border terrorism.
India's blunt message followed a series of ceasefire violations along the LoC in Jammu and Kashmir by Pakistan which resorted to mortar shelling of Indian areas over two days. India responded in kind and both sides said they had suffered casualties.
The UN has long maintained an institutional presence in the contested area between India and Pakistan. According to the Security Council mandate given in a 1971 resolution, UNMOGIP observes and reports on ceasefire violations along and across the LoC and border between the South Asian neighbours in Jammu and Kashmir, as well as reports developments that could lead to ceasefire violations.
UNMOGIP currently comprises 42 military observers and a number of civilian staff members.