India: UN Security Council must uphold peace and security in Jammu and Kashmir

Ahead of a closed-door meeting on the situation in Jammu and Kashmir at the UN Security Council later today, Kumi Naidoo, Secretary General of Amnesty International, 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.

“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.

“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.”

There has been a lockdown and communications blackout in Jammu and Kashmir since the Indian government’s decision to revoke the special status of the region on 5 August. Access to education and healthcare are also being severely disrupted.

Political opposition leaders and activists in the region continue to be silenced by the government. There are no details available on former chief ministers Farooq Abdullah, Omar Abdullah and Mehbooba Mufti, who were all detained on 5 August.

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