India has hit out at Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan for his remarks on Jammu and Kashmir at the inauguration of the United Nations General Assembly. "Turkey should learn to respect the sovereignty of other nations and reflect on its own policies more deeply," the Permanent Mission of India in New York wrote in its written Right to Reply, following Erdogan's remarks on Jammu and Kashmir.
Erdogan had, during his virtual address, spoken much about Kashmir being a burning issue, which had become further complicated with the "steps taken following the abolition of the special status of Jammu-Kashmir". Erdogan also said that Turkey was in favour of resolving the issue through dialogue within the framework of the United Nations resolutions and especially, in line with the expectations of the people of Kashmir.
India said that these comments “constitute a gross interference in India's internal affairs and are completely unacceptable".
Turkey has been raising the Kashmir issue since some time. Last year, too, Erdogan had said that the international community had failed to devote enough attention to Kashmir.
The statements assume significance as Turkey and Pakistan have been getting closer in recent times, with Malaysia being the other Islamic country to utter anti-India comments on the abrogation of Article 370 last year. Most of the other countries, especially the Islamic ones, have refrained from commenting on what they have termed India's internal matter.
Earlier, India had hit out against Pakistan, Turkey and the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation for their comments on India and Kashmir at the Human Rights Council's 46th session. India stated that the OIC had allowed itself to be misused by Pakistan to subverse its own agenda, adding that it was up to the OIC members to decide whether it was in their interests to allow Pakistan to do so.
On Monday, Pakistan foreign minister Shah Mamhood Qureshi had told an OIC contact group, on the sidelines of the UNGA, that India had intensified belligerent rhetoric against Pakistan and was even threatening military aggression. The OIC is Pakistan's go to forum to complain about India. Recently, Pakistan even threatened to start another Islamic grouping if OIC didn't call out India. Pakistan was chastised by Saudi Arabia for that threat, and even a much-needed financial aid was withdrawn. However, at the Human Rights Council last week, the OIC did speak about the Kashmir issue.