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Strike over civilian killings shuts down Indian Kashmir

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Press TV – September 21, 2013

Shops, businesses, and schools have been closed with public transport off the roads in the Indian-controlled Kashmir after a pro-independence group called for a strike to protest recent civilian killings in the mountainous Himalayan region.

On Saturday, the shutdown was observed across the disputed territory following a call given by the leader of the All Parties Hurriyat Conference, Syed Ali Shah Geelani.

The All Parties Hurriyat Conference is a political front formed as an alliance of 26 political, social and religious organizations in Kashmir.

Contingents of Indian police and paramilitary soldiers were deployed to Kashmir’s main city of Srinagar and other major towns on Saturday to prevent people from holding anti-India demonstrations.

Most of the pro-independence leaders, including Geelani, chairman of the Awami Action Committee Mohammad Umar Farooq and chairman of the Jammu Kashmir Liberation Front Mohammad Yasin Malik, also remained under house arrest.

The pro-independence leaders were placed under house arrest on Friday after they called for a march to the southern town of Shopian to protest against the killing of five people.

Shopian has been under curfew for two weeks, following the killing of five people in two paramilitary shootings.

Four people were killed on September 7 when Indian paramilitary forces opened fire on them in Shopian, situated about 50 kilometers (30 miles) south of Srinagar. Paramilitary troops killed another person in the same town on September 11.

Kashmir lies at the heart of more than 60 years of hostility between India and Pakistan. Both countries claim the region in full but each only has control over a section of the territory.

Over the past two decades, the conflict in Kashmir has left over 47,000 people dead by the official count, although other sources say the death toll could be as high as 90,000.

September 21, 2013 - Posted by | Solidarity and Activism, Subjugation - Torture | , , , , , , ,

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