UNGA 2020: Erdogan calls Kashmir conflict a 'burning issue'

WION Web Team
United Nations, United States Updated: Sep 22, 2020, 10:00 PM(IST)

File photo. Photograph:( AFP )

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At last year's high-level meeting of the General Assembly, only Erdogan and Mahatir Mohammed, the then-Prime Minister of Malaysia, joined Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan to talk about Kashmir.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who is vying for the leadership of Islamic nations, brought up the Kashmir yet again at the United Nations General Assembly on Tuesday.

During his address, he said, "the Kashmir conflict which is also key to the stability and peace of South Asia is still a burning issue."

Also read: India takes strong exception to Turkish President Erdogan's comments on Kashmir 

"We are in favour of solving this issue through dialogue within the framework of the United Nations resolutions, especially in line with the expectations of the people of Kashmir," he added.


The prime Security Council directive on Kashmir, Resolution 47, called for Pakistan to remove its troops and personnel from the region as the first step and a pre-condition for a referendum.

Islamabad has rejected it and continued its occupation allowing for India to settle the matter through elections in Kashmir.

Erdogan avoided naming India directly, while he had named countries in many of the conflicts from Azerbaijan to Armenia that he spoke about.

Also read: Turkey President Erdogan rakes up Kashmir issue in Pakistan Parliament

At last year's high-level meeting of the General Assembly, only Erdogan and Mahatir Mohammed, the then-Prime Minister of Malaysia, joined Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan to talk about Kashmir.

While he condemned terrorism in other parts of the world, Erdogan was silent on the terrorism directed against India.

In his attempt to challenge the Saudi leadership of the Islamic nations, he criticised attempts to bring about reconciliation with Israel, but did not directly mention the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain, which recently set up diplomatic resolution with Israel, with the apparent approval of Riyadh.

"Participation of some countries of the region in this game does not mean anything beyond serving Israel`s efforts to erode basic international parameters," Erdogan said.

Also read: Why Greece, Turkey are fighting over hydrocarbons in Mediterranean Sea

Erdogan also called for "sincere" dialogue to settle the growing row with Greece over Ankara's energy search in the eastern Mediterranean, rejecting "harassment".

NATO members Turkey and Greece have been at odds over rights to potential hydrocarbon resources in the eastern Mediterranean and the extent of their continental shelves.

Earlier, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres kicked off the six-day General Debate. 

Despite this year's United Nations General Assembly General Debate being a mostly virtual event, there was a heavy presence of New York City Police officers in front of the UN building.

The annual meeting of world leaders at the United Nations, started on Tuesday with no presidents or prime ministers physically present in New York, because of the world-wide coronavirus pandemic. All statements have been pre-recorded and will be broadcast in the General Assembly hall.

The United Nations was created when countries came together after World War II to prevent conflict.

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