Imran Khan: India’s Kashmir move ‘pushing people into extremism’

    India’s continued crackdown in Kashmir is “pushing more people into extremism”, Pakistan‘s Prime Minister Imran Khan has warned.

    Speaking at a rally in Muzaffarabad, capital of Pakistan-administered Kashmir, on Friday, Khan added that he would present Kashmir’s case at the United Nations General Assembly in New York next week.

    “When atrocities reach their peak, people would prefer that death is better than this insulting life,” Khan said at a rally attended by several thousand people.

    “The Kashmir issue today is a humanitarian problem.

    “I want to tell India that, by detaining thousands of people, you are pushing people into extremism. People will rise against India, and it is not just about Indian Muslims. There are 1.25 billion Muslims around the world. They all are watching this.” 

    Since India revoked the special status of the part of Kashmir it governs on August 5, at least 4,000 people have been arrested and cases of abuse and torture have been reported

    The presidential decree issued by Prime Minister Narendra Modi revoked Article 370 of India’s constitution that guaranteed special rights to the Muslim-majority state, including the right to its own constitution and autonomy to make laws on all matters except defence, communications and foreign affairs.

    The Delhi government has said its abolition of Kashmir’s special status, which had allowed it to write many of its own laws, is meant to help to combat terrorism and to boost the region’s economic development.

    About two-thirds of the population of Jammu and Kashmir is Muslim, while India has an overall Hindu majority.

    In the lead-up to the move, India sent thousands of additional troops to the disputed region, imposed a crippling curfew, shut down telecommunications and internet, and arrested political leaders.

    On Thursday, the Pakistan PM also thanked the rest of the world for its support for Kashmir.

    “I commend 58 countries that joined Pakistan at the UN Human Rights Council on September 10, reinforcing demands of international community for India, to stop use of force, lift siege, remove other restrictions, respect and protect Kashmir’s rights, and resolve Kashmir dispute through the UNSC resolutions.”

    He also welcomed the European Union’s call for a peaceful solution of the Kashmir dispute, in line with the UNSC resolutions, international law and bilateral agreements.

    India and Pakistan claim Kashmir in full but rule parts of it.

    China also control a very small part of the contested region, but it is nuclear-armed India and Pakistan that have fought two of their three wars over the disputed territory.

    A rebellion in Indian-administered Kashmir has been going on for 30 years and has killed 70,000 people. 

    Kashmir shutdown: Farmers struggle to make a living

    Al Jazeera and news agencies


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