NEW YORK: The United States (US) South and Central Asian Affairs Assistant State Secretary Alice Wells, addressing the 74th session of the United Nations (UN) General Assembly (UNGA) on Thursday, asked the Indian government to ease restrictions and lift the curfew in the Indian occupied Kashmir (IOK) along-with releasing all those who were detained during the period of the curfew.
According to detail, Wells stressed that the curfew in IOK be lifted by implementing the required steps in a “rapid action”.
She reiterated US president Donald Trump’s stance that US is willing to mediate the issue of Kashmir if that both India and Pakistan asks for it.
Wells stated that the US is increasingly concerned now with mass detentions in the IOK valley, asked her Indian counterparts to resume the political engagement process with local Kashmiri leaders and also to schedule the long “promised elections” at the earliest.
The Indian government revoked constitutional Article 370 on August 5, that gave a special status to the State of Jammu and Kashmir forcibly held by India, and imposed the harshest restrictions along-with a valley-wide curfew.
Infringing on the rights of Kashmiri people, India since the curfew imposed a communication blackout, split the State of Jammu and Kashmir in two union territories – the union territory of Jammu and Kashmir comprising of Baramulla, Srinagar, Anantnag, Udhampur and Jammu constituencies and the union territory of Ladakh comprising of one territory of the same name.
The government of India continues to fool the international world by stating that the curfew is being lifted off gradually and that life is returning to normalcy, however several local and international journalists claim that all the valley-wide restrictions are still in place.
Wells noted that although Pakistan agrees on US mediating tension in Kashmir however it is India that denies any such help.
She suggested that the world community will be better off if the continued tensions in Kashmir are reduced and that a healthy dialogue resumes among all stakeholders.
She highlighted that Trump is still willing to mediate on the issue and offers again the same after having bilaterally met with Indian prime minister (PM) Narendra Modi on Tuesday.