EU backs Kashmir solution through bilateral dialoguehttps://indianexpress.com/article/india/eu-backs-kashmir-solution-through-bilateral-dialogue-5957093/

EU backs Kashmir solution through bilateral dialogue

European Commission’s Vice-President Federica Mogherini “reiterated the call to avoid an escalation of tensions and stressed the importance of steps to restore the rights and freedoms of the population in Kashmir,” the statement said.

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Jaishankar debriefed Mogherini on the “state of play and on the security situation”, a statement issued by European Union mentioned. (AP Photo/ Dar Yasin/File)

The European Union on Sunday mentioned that the Kashmir issue needs to be resolved through bilateral discussions between India and Pakistan.

External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar on Sunday met European Commission’s Vice-President Federica Mogherini, who is also the High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, in Brussels to discuss the situation in Kashmir.

Jaishankar debriefed Mogherini on the “state of play and on the security situation”, a statement issued by European Union mentioned. It also stated that the “High Representative reaffirmed the EU’s support to a peaceful solution to the crisis in Kashmir through bilateral dialogue between India and Pakistan”.

Mogherini “reiterated the call to avoid an escalation of tensions and stressed the importance of steps to restore the rights and freedoms of the population in Kashmir,” the statement said.

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Even as India has been reiterating at all international platforms that revocation of the special status of Jammu and Kashmir is an internal matter and does not need any third country’s intervention in its discussions with Pakistan, one of the president hopefuls of the US, Bernie Sanders, said India’s action was “unacceptable”.

He said, “India’s action is unacceptable and the communications blockade must be lifted immediately, and the United States government must speak out boldly in support of international humanitarian law and in support of a UN-backed peaceful resolution that respects the will of the Kashmiri people.”

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He added that he was “deeply concerned” about the situation in Kashmir as the “Indian government has revoked Kashmiri autonomy, cracked down on dissent and instituted a communication blackout”.

Sanders also said “the crackdown in the name of security is also denying the Kashmiri people the access to medical care”.

“Even many respected doctors in India have acknowledged that the Indian government-imposed restrictions on travel are threatening the life-saving care that patients need,” he said.

The comments by Sanders come just a few days after US President Donald Trump agreed last week on the sidelines of the G7 summit that Kashmir is a bilateral issue.