People of Jammu and Kashmir should not be treated as pawns: Amnesty International


Human rights watchdog Amnesty International, following Modi-led Hindu nationalist Indian government’s human rights’ abuses in occupied Kashmir, asserted that the international community must come together to call for the human rights to be respected.Kumi Naidoo, Secretary General of Amnesty International in a statement issued on its website, said, “The actions of the Indian government have thrown ordinary people’s lives into turmoil, subjecting them to unnecessary pain and distress on top of the years of human rights violations they have already endured.””The people of Jammu and Kashmir should not be treated as pawns in a political crisis, and the international community must come together to call for their human rights to be respected.”

“We reiterate our calls to the Indian government to act in accordance with international human rights law and standards towards people living in Jammu and Kashmir, including in relation to arrests and detentions of political opponents, and the rights to liberty and freedom of movement,” he said.

“For the first time in decades the United Nations Security Council is taking up the issue of Jammu and Kashmir. Members of the council need to remember that their mandate is to protect international peace and security – and they should seek to resolve the situation in a way that puts the human rights of the people in this troubled region at its centre.

The human rights’ watchdog called upon Indian prime minister Narendra Modi to end ongoing lockdown in the valley.

Earlier, the press release of Amnesty International had mentioned the lockdown and communications blackout in Kashmir, stressing that it not only restricted the outflow of information but also hindered access to education and healthcare.

The Amnesty International had also expressed concern over the detention of political opposition leaders and activists in the region including former chief ministers Farooq Abdullah, Omar Abdullah and Mehbooba Mufti since 5 August.

It quoted the statement of a UN Special Rapporteur on freedom of expression as saying that “shutting down entire parts of communications systems can never be justified under international human rights law”.