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Tuesday, March 02, 2021

J&K: Foreign envoys arrive in Srinagar on a two-day visit to UT

The delegation includes envoys from Chile, Brazil, Cuba, Bolivia, Estonia, Finland, France, Ireland, Netherlands, Portugal, EU, Belgium, Spain, Sweden, Italy, Bangladesh, Malawi, Eritrea, Cote d’Ivoire, Ghana, Senegal, Malaysia, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi |
Updated: February 17, 2021 5:09:28 pm
Foreign envoys visit Srinagar, Jammu and kashmir, 4G restoration, J&K News, India news, Indian expressUpon their arrival, the envoys were accorded a traditional welcome in the valley. (ANI)

A delegation of foreign envoys from 24 nations arrived in Srinagar on a two-day visit to the Valley on Wednesday to take stock of the Union Territory’s development work and security situation, especially after the successful exercise of the District Development Council elections.

The delegation includes envoys from Chile, Brazil, Cuba, Bolivia, Estonia, Finland, France, Ireland, Netherlands, Portugal, EU, Belgium, Spain, Sweden, Italy, Bangladesh, Malawi, Eritrea, Cote d’Ivoire, Ghana, Senegal, Malaysia, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan.

Foreign envoys visit Srinagar, Jammu and kashmir, 4G restoration, J&K News, India news, Indian express European delegation arriving in Kashmir on Wednesday for assessing the situation following the scrapping of its special status in 2019. (Express photo by Shuaib Masoodi)

After being accorded a traditional welcome, they were briefed on the Panchayati Raj and grievance redressal system at Magam block of Budgam district. French envoy Emmanuel Lenain and Italian envoy Vincenzo de Luca also interacted with locals.

On Thursday, the ambassadors would visit Jammu where they are likely to meet DDC members and representatives of some social organisations. They will be briefed about the security situation by senior officers involved in the law and order situation in the Valley, particulary on Pakistan’s frequent ceasefire violations and attempts to push terrorists into India through the Line of Control, officials said.

Their visit comes days after the 4G mobile Internet was restored after one-and-A-half years in all of the Union Territory.

On February 9, 2020, the government had taken a group of 15 foreign envoys to Srinagar for a two-day visit to review the ground situation.

In October 2019, in the first visit by a foreign delegation after the government’s decision on J&K, a team of 23 MEPs (Members of European Parliament) — many from far-right parties — went to Kashmir on a two-day trip.

The MEA spokesperson, Raveesh Kumar, had then said that the MEPs had “expressed a keen desire” to see the ground situation, and their statements reflected that they got an understanding of the “how terrorism affects India, and how terrorism affects Kashmir”. He said it was a sort of a “familiarisation visit” for these MPs, who were from from different parties and different countries.

Responding to the criticism that the visit was organised by private organisations, the MEA spokesperson had said many visits by foreign dignitaries take place through non-official channels.

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