Islamabad - The government on Tuesday announced to take the Kashmir dispute to International Court of Justice (ICJ) after Indian government revoked special status of the occupied territory on August 5.

This was confirmed by Special Assistant to Prime Minister on Information and Broadcasting Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan while briefing media persons about decisions taken by the Federal Cabinet which met yesterday with Prime Minister Imran Khan in the chair.

Firdous said Cabinet has nodded in principle the proposal to take the Kashmir dispute with India to the International Court of Justice.

Meanwhile, Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi while talking to a private news channel said the decision was taken after considering all legal aspects.

Fidous continued that the Prime Minister apprised the cabinet in detail about his telephonic conversation with President Trump.

The Prime Minister had informed President Trump that India plans to perpetrate genocide of Kashmiris to change the demographic composition of the occupied region.

The Prime Minister urged President Trump that international community must play its role, constitute a fact-finding mission and stop India from its brutalities in Occupied Kashmir.

Pak-Turkey Strategic Economic Framework approved

Nod for bill against domestic violence and protection of women

Christian Marriage & Divorce Bill OKed

Firdous urged Pakistani media to highlight the Kashmir issue with the collaboration of international media.

The Prime Minister emphasised that Kashmir is first line of defence for Pakistan. He emphasised that all elements including the media should intensify their campaign on raising voice against the designs of Narendra Modi to annex Kashmir.

On August 5, India stripped Kashmiris of the special autonomy they had for seven decades through a rushed presidential order that followed an indefinite curfew imposed in occupied Kashmir and elected leaders were put under house arrest.

Pakistan had strongly condemned the move and vowed to “exercise all possible options to counter the illegal steps” taken by India. By repealing Article 370 of the constitution, people from the rest of India will now have the right to acquire property in Kashmir and settle there permanently.

She went on to say that the cabinet has also approved Pak-Turkey Strategic Economic Framework to forge stronger cooperation between Pakistan and Turkey.

She said Prime Minister Imran Khan will head the high-level cooperation committee from Pakistan side while Turkish side will be headed by President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

She said that the framework has nine joint working groups that will be headed by Minister of Economic Affairs from Pakistan side, adding that all sectors of the economy will be covered by joint working groups and 71 actionable items have been included in these.

The items she said include Free Trade Agreement, Technology Transfer, capacity building, and defence cooperation. This framework will help connect Pakistan with Central Asia, Russia and the West.

She further said that the Prime Minister told the cabinet about the challenges faced by the government when it came to power.

The Prime Minister, she said, told the cabinet that economy which was on verge of default was revived and now it is in sustainable mode. The Current Account Deficit has been brought down by 30 per cent and in one year it reduced from 19.8 billion dollars to 13.5 billion dollars.

The meeting also took into consideration the investment friendly policies to encourage foreign investors, especially overseas Pakistanis.

The Cabinet discussed measures to give confidence to businessmen and to ensure business friendly environment. It discussed the procedural challenges in the working of NAB that could deter businessmen on taking decisions.

The Cabinet endorsed the decisions of committee on privatisation in its last meeting.

The Cabinet accorded approval of five billion rupees to give interest free loans to poor and homeless people.

The Prime Minister also directed to ensure merit and transparency in the disbursing of loans. He said a mechanism and detailed strategy be made to launch the scheme across the country.

The cabinet accorded approval in principle to Christian Marriage and Divorce Bill as per religious norms and following of the Christian community.

Besides, an approval was given for bill against domestic violence and protection of women.

The cabinet also discussed salient challenges and achievements of the government during its first year.

Various ministers presented proposals and suggestions of public welfare being launched by their ministries.

The Prime Minister directed that government’s grievances cells and Pakistan Citizens Portal should work together and share information to avoid duplication.

The cabinet also discussed measures to increase plantation in the country and suggested to involve youth in plantation of fruit trees.

The cabinet directed the concerned ministry for provision of solar stoves in hilly areas where gas facility is not available.

Answering a question about extension in service to the incumbent Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa, Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan said General Qamar Javed Bajwa has a pivotal role in Afghan peace process.

She said COAS’s continuity is a right step from Prime Minister Imran Khan because government needs continuity in its policies in the context of regional security situation.