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EU calls for political solution on Kashmir

EU said on Tuesday a bilateral political solution of Kashmir issue between India and Pakistan is the only way to solve the dispute.

“We, as the EU, support a bilateral political solution between India and Pakistan over Kashmir, which in our view remains the only way to solve a long-lasting dispute that causes instability and insecurity in the region,” Maja Kocijancic, EU spokesperson for foreign affairs and security policy, said in a press briefing in Brussels.

Kocijancic said the EU has been quite active on the diplomatic front over the Kashmir issue.

Earlier this month, the EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini called foreign ministers of India and Pakistan and urged them to avoid an escalation of tensions in Kashmir, Kocijancic said.

“The dialogue between India and Pakistan through diplomatic channels is crucial,” she added.

India, earlier this month, removed all special provisions granted to Jammu and Kashmir under Article 370 of Indian Constitution.

It also divided the erstwhile province into two centrally administered “union territories” and took away powers from the assembly.

Jammu and Kashmir is under near-complete lockdown since Aug. 5 after India scrapped the special provisions, according to several rights group, including the Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International.

India blocked communications and imposed strict restrictions to thwart any rebellion while political leaders in the region have been detained as the right groups repeatedly called on New Delhi to lift the restrictions and release political detainees.

From 1954 until Aug. 5, 2019, Jammu and Kashmir had special provisions under which it enacted its own laws. The provisions also protected the region’s citizenship law, which barred outsiders from settling in and owning land in the territory.

India and Pakistan both hold Kashmir in parts and claim it in full. China also controls part of the contested region, but it is India and Pakistan who have fought two wars over Kashmir.

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