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Sunday 4th June 2023 / 15 Zulkaedah 1444

US asks India to end curfew, restrictions in IOK

ISLAMABAD: A bill has been introduced in the United States House of Representatives asking India to end the restrictions on communications and mass detentions in occupied Kashmir and preserve religious freedom for all residents.
The resolution number 745 was introduced by Indian-American Democrat lawmaker Pramila Jayapal, along with Republican lawmaker Steve Watkins.

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It observed that it has been more than four months now since political leaders, including three former chief ministers, were detained in Jammu and Kashmir.
Following the revocation of Article 370 under the Constitution that gave a special status to Jammu and Kashmir.
The US resolution urges the Government of India to lift the remaining restrictions on communication and to restore internet access across all of Jammu and Kashmir as swiftly as possible.
Swiftly release arbitrarily detained people in Jammu and Kashmir; refrain from conditioning the release of detained people on their willingness to sign bonds prohibiting any political activities and speeches.
Allow international human rights observers and journalists to access Jammu and Kashmir and operate freely throughout India, without threats, and condemn, at the highest levels.

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All religiously motivated violence, including that violence which targets against religious minorities.
The U.S. lawmakers said they reject arbitrary detention, use of excessive force against civilians, and suppression of peaceful expression of dissent as proportional responses to security challenges.
The resolution further urges the Government of India to ensure that any actions taken in pursuit of legitimate security priorities respect the human rights of all people and adhere to international human rights law.
The U.S. House of Representatives is dominated by democrats who have been extremely critical of India’s restrictions in Jammu and Kashmir.

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India has been lobbying hard to counter this and has hired a lobbying firm close to the Democratic Party to get its message across.
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