Last week, the Foreign Secretary launched the Government’s Human Rights and Democracy Report. The Report is a comprehensive look at the human rights work of the Foreign & Commonwealth Office around the world.
The Foreign Secretary has said that 2011 will stand out as a positive year for human rights and democracy. He went on to say that the UK is one of the most active governments in the world when it comes to promoting human rights and that this report is one of the most comprehensive produced by any foreign ministry in the world.
His speech included a section relating to Kashmir:
In South Asia, the Conflict Pool has supported human rights, conflict prevention and peace building in Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Maldives, Nepal, and Indian-administered Kashmir. In Kashmir, the Conflict Pool worked on both sides of the Line of Control. Officials in our high commissions in New Delhi and Islamabad regularly discussed the situation in Kashmir with the Indian and Pakistani governments, and with our contacts in Indian and Pakistan-administered Kashmir. We continue to encourage India and Pakistan to seek a lasting resolution that takes into account the wishes of the Kashmiri people. We called for an end to all external support for violence in Kashmir. We continue to urge the government of Pakistan to take action against the presence and activities of militant groups in Pakistan-administered Kashmir. Levels of reported militant violence in Indian-administered Kashmir have been declining since 2008, but Indian authorities report continued infiltration across the Line of Control.
Following my visit to Kashmir last month, I have spoken to the responsible minister, who assures me that the Government continues to press delicately for progress.