On 14 February 2020, when addressing both houses of parliament during his two-day visit to Pakistan, Turkish President said, “Our Kashmiri brothers have been living under difficult circumstances over the years. However, the recent unilateral steps have further added to the woes of the Kashmiri people and the situation has become alarming.” He also stated that the Kashmir dispute must be resolved through dialogue and peaceful means that are grounded in justice.
On 17 February 2020, India summoned the Turkish envoy in the wake of the Turkey-Pakistan Joint Declaration addressing the situation in the state of Jammu and Kashmir.
“India has made a strong demarche with the Turkish Government on the remarks made by President Erdogan on the Indian Union Territory of Jammu & Kashmir during his recent visit to Islamabad. These remarks reflect neither an understanding of history nor of the conduct of diplomacy. They distort events of the past to advance a narrow-minded view of the present. India made a strong demarche with the Turkish Government”, official spokesperson of the Ministry of External Affairs Raveesh Kumar stated.
On the Kashmir issue, this is not the first time when a remark by the Turkish president causes tension between Turkey and India. In October 2020, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi cancelled his visit to Turkey following Erdogan’s speech at the United Nations, in which he mentioned Kashmir.
India withdrew the statehood and special status of Jammu and Kashmir on 5 August 2019. The move stirred objection and protests from neighbouring Pakistan and further worsening Indo-Pak relations.