Thursday, 14 October 2010

National Self-Determination - Not Just The Kashmiris Who Are Struggling

I was very lucky this week. On Tuesday I dined - for the second time this year - with Sultan Mahmood Chaudhry. He is a lovely gentleman, who amongst his many accomplishments is a former Prime Minister of Kashmir. He is now a leading light in the Kashmiri fight for national self-determination.

The Kashmiri people were promised a referendum on self-determination way back in the 1940s - and they are still waiting. That  sounds familiar to we Brits, who of course have been promised referenda on the Constitution & the Lisbon Treaty. I don't want to make light of this in any way, as I am aware that the Kashmiris are suffering massacres at the hands of the Indian occupiers, which somewhat puts our plight into perspective.

The point is, however, that national self-determination should be a basic human right, and here at the beginning of the 21st century not all of our fellow human beings are enjoying this right.

It makes me ponder on the long-term implications of surrendering our own sovereignty to the EU.

It also makes me realise how imortant is the campaign for a referendum on our continued EU membership is. I urge you to support it. Elsewhere in the world people are dying in the struggle to have their voices heard. We don't have to do that - yet - but if we allow ourselves to become complacent, who knows what the future may bring.

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