United Nations, Jun 27: India has strongly dismissed and condemned the "baseless" remarks on Kashmir made by a Pakistani diplomat during a UN Security Council debate on children and armed conflict, calling it another habitual attempt to divert attention from the "grave violations" against children that continue unabated in Pakistan.

"Let me respond briefly in the interest of time to remarks, which were obviously politically motivated and unfounded, made by one representative against my country. I categorically dismiss and condemn these baseless remarks with the contempt they deserve,” Ambassador R. Ravindra, Chargé d'Affaires and Deputy Permanent Representative of India to the UN, said Wednesday.

He made the remarks while delivering a statement at the UN Security Council's open debate on Children and Armed Conflict.

Ravindra said this is "nothing but another habitual attempt to divert attention from the grave violations against children that continue unabated in his own country," as highlighted in this year's report by UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on children and armed conflict.

"As far as Union Territories of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh are concerned they were, are and always will be an integral and inalienable part of India, irrespective of what this particular representative or his country believes or wishes," Ravindra said.

India's strong response came after Pakistan's envoy at the UN Munir Akram spoke at length about Jammu and Kashmir in his remarks to the Council during the open debate on Children and Armed Conflict.

The Secretary General's report on Children and Armed Conflict, which covers the period from January to December 2023, notes that in Pakistan a total of 78 grave violations against 73 children (13 boys, 7 girls, 53 sex unknown) were reported. Children (73) were reportedly killed (40) and maimed (33) by unidentified armed elements (72) and in one case, the casualty was claimed by Islamic State (1). Casualties were caused by explosive ordnance (66) and gunshots (7). Five attacks on schools, including against protected persons in relation to schools, were reported.

“I am concerned about the rise in reported grave violations, in particular the killing and maiming of children and attacks against schools, and about incidents in the border areas with Afghanistan,” the UN chief said in his comments about Pakistan in the report.

This was the second day in a row that Munir raised the issue of Kashmir in his remarks at the UN and was met with a strong retort by India. On Tuesday, India slammed Pakistan for its “baseless and deceitful narratives” after Munir made references to Kashmir in the UN General Assembly.

Pakistan regularly raises the issue of Jammu and Kashmir at various UN platforms, irrespective of the subject matter being discussed or the theme of the forum and fails to get any support or traction.

India has previously rejected Pakistan's attempts to raise the Kashmir issue at international forums, asserting that the "Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir and the Union Territory of Ladakh have been, are and will always remain integral and inalienable parts of India." PTI