Six Kashmiris martyred, restrictions tightened in IOK after PM Imran’s UNGA address

Hundreds of Kashmiris protested against New Delhi following premier's speech

Agencies September 28, 2019
Hundreds of Kashmiris protested against New Delhi following premier's speech. PHOTO: FILE

SRINAGAR: At least six Kashmiri youths were martyred in Occupied Jammu and Kashmir on Saturday as the Indian occupying forces tightened restrictions, fearing protests after Prime Minister Imran Khan’s impassioned speech at UN General Assembly last night.

Three youths were martyred in Ganderbal, about 12 miles north of Srinagar, and another three in Batote, located on the highway connecting Jammu and Srinagar during cordon and search operations.

Prime Minister Imran had warned of a bloodbath once India lifts its restrictions in IOK, which have been in force since it revoked the region’s decades-old autonomy in August and detained thousands of people. He also warned the Kashmir dispute could escalate into an all-out nuclear war that would have consequences for the whole world.

Soon after the speech, hundreds of Kashmiris came out of their homes, shouting slogans in support of Pakistan’s prime minister late on Friday night and calling for the independence of the occupied.

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Despite heavy presence of Indian troops, people at many places came out of their homes and celebrated with firecrackers as soon as Imran Khan’s speech ended. The Indian authorities tightened restrictions in Srinagar to prevent people from staging further demonstrations.

Police vans fitted with speakers made public announcements in some parts of Srinagar about movement restrictions, while additional troops were deployed to prevent protests, according to officials and two witnesses.

The troops also blocked access to the main business centre of Srinagar with razor wire.

“This was necessitated after protests across Srinagar city last night soon after Imran Khan's speech,” a police official, who declined to be identified, told Reuters.

India’s crackdown as it revoked Kashmir's special status was accompanied by severe restrictions on movement, as well as disconnection of telephone services. Though New Delhi has eased some of the movement curbs, no prominent detainees have been freed and mobile and internet connections remained suspended.

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While warning of the consequences of lifting what he described as an "inhuman curfew," Prime Minister Imran demanded India do so and free all detainees.

In some areas -- including the Soura region near Srinagar which has witnessed protests in the past against India's decision -- people clashed with security forces by pelting stones on Friday night, forcing police to use tear gas to disperse them, said an Indian official.

PM Imran addressed the United Nations a day after the senior US diplomat for South Asia called for a lowering of rhetoric between India and Pakistan, while saying that Washington hoped to see rapid action by India to lift restrictions it has imposed in occupied Kashmir and the release of detainees there.


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