The speeches at the UN General Assembly, by Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan, and a day later by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, were a study in contrasts. Mr. Modi focused on India’s own role on the world stage and the need to reform the UN and expand the Security Council to give India more representation.
Mr. Khan focused less time on Pakistan, launching a broadside against India. Mr. Modi made no reference to Pakistan, and spoke about terrorism only in broader terms. A reply to Mr. Khan’s speech was left to an Indian diplomat, who described it as an “incessant rant” and “lies, misinformation and warmongering”. Mr. Khan’s references to India, which formed more than a third of his text, repeated the vilification in his previous speeches: accusing the Modi government of “state sponsorship of Islamophobia”, of following an “extremist ideology” of the RSS, which he claims is “inspired” by Nazi concepts of “racial purity and supremacy”, and of planning to “cleanse” the country of minorities.
Extreme comparisons were made between the Citizenship (Amendment) Act and the Nuremberg laws, as well as between detention camps in Assam and the concentration camps of Nazi Germany. Next, he launched into a diatribe on Jammu and Kashmir, more or less mirroring his speech of last year, which included accusations that the government’s moves to dilute Article 370 and reorganise J&K State into Union Territories were akin to a “final solution” of “genocide” for the State, and contravenes UN laws.
He concluded with a reference to LoC tensions, where ceasefire violations have risen, ending on an exaggerated note that referred to Kashmir as a “nuclear flashpoint”.