Condemning the killings of seven civilians in Jammu and Kashmir’s Pulwama district, Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan on Sunday emphasised on the need for dialogue to resolve the “conflict” in the state and vowed to raise the issue of alleged “violation of human rights” with the United Nations Security Council (UNSC).
Taking to Twitter, the PTI chief said, “Strongly condemn the killing of innocent Kashmiri civilians in Pulwama by Indian security forces. Only dialogue and not violence and killings will resolve this conflict. We will raise the issue of India’s human rights violations and demand UNSC to fulfil its J&K plebiscite commitment.”
In another tweet, he said, “Kashmiris must be allowed to decide their future.”
Kashmiris must be allowed to decide their future. https://t.co/Y91PUVckh8
— Imran Khan (@ImranKhanPTI) December 16, 2018
Seven people, including two minors, were killed and at least 23 other civilians were injured when security forces opened fire on protesters after an encounter, in which three militants and an Armyman were killed at Sirnoo village of the district on Saturday morning. While police said the civilians were killed when they came “dangerously close” to the site of the encounter, eyewitnesses said they were killed more than an hour after the gunfight.
While mobile internet services were suspended in several parts of the Valley as a precautionary measure yesterday, police appealed the citizens to maintain calm and stay away from the encounter site. The services were restored today.
Political parties had lashed out at Governor Satya Pal Malik, with former J&K chief minister Mehbooba Mufti asking “is this what was expected from the Governor’s rule?”. “No probe enough to bring back the dead innocent civilians. South Kashmir has been reeling under fear for the last six months. Is this what was expected from the Governor’s rule? The administration has failed in securing civilian lives. Deepest condolences to the bereaved.”
She added: “How long are we going to shoulder the coffins of our youngsters? So many civilians killed today post encounter in Pulwama. No country can win a war by killing its own people. I strongly condemn these killings, and once again appeal for efforts, to stop this bloodbath.” J&K has been under the rule of the Governor who had dissolved the Assembly last month.
To protest against the killings, separatists, under the banner of Joint Resistance Leadership, comprising Syed Ali Shah Geelani, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and Mohammad Yasin Malik, have called for a three-day strike in the state.
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