Russian Ambassador to India, Nikolay R Kudashev, on Friday said that he does not feel there is a reason to travel to Kashmir as it is an internal matter of India.
“I do not feel that there is a reason for me to travel to Kashmir. Your decisions, as far as Jammu and Kashmir are concerned, this is your internal matter belonging to the constitutional space of India,” said Kudashev, when asked whether he is planning to visit Kashmir in near future.
“Those who are concerned about the situation in Kashmir, those who put in doubt the Indian policies in Kashmir, they could travel if they wish. They could see for themselves. We never put it in doubt,” he added. The ambassador made these remarks during a press conference on Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s visit to India for Raisina Dialogue 2020.
The envoy’s remarks come a week after a 15-member delegation of envoys from different countries visited Jammu and Kashmir on a two-day visit to see first hand the efforts being made by the government in the region since the abrogation of Article 370 of the Constitution that accorded special status to the region.
The group of foreign envoys included those from United States, South Korea, Vietnam, Bangladesh, Maldives, Morocco, Fiji, Norway, Philippines, Argentina, Peru, Niger, Nigeria, Togo, and Guyana.
When asked about Wednesday’s United Nations Security Council (UNSC) closed-door meeting over Kashmir that was called by China on the behest of Pakistan, the envoy said that Russia was never in favor of bringing the issue to the platform as it is strictly bilateral between New Delhi and Islamabad.
“We were never in favor of bringing the issue in the UNSC because this is strictly a bilateral issue for India and Pakistan on the basis on Simla and Lahore Declaration,” he said.
China and Pakistan managed to hold an informal closed-door consultation on Kashmir in the UNSC in New York. However, the meeting ended without an outcome after the overwhelming majority of the UNSC conveyed that the world body was not the right forum to discuss the Kashmir issue, Ministry of External Affairs Spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said on Thursday.