SRINAGAR (AFP) - Tough laws that fuel much of the public unrest in the disputed Indian-occupied Kashmir could be withdrawn due to a fall in violence, the region's chief minister said Wednesday. The widely-detested Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) gives security forces sweeping powers on detention, shooting of suspected militants and destruction of property suspected to be used as hideouts. It has been in force since 1990 across Held Kashmir, a Muslim-majority region of north India where a 20-year struggle against rule from New Delhi has cost tens of thousands of lives. IHK Chief Minister Omar Abdullah, speaking after a meeting on Tuesday in New Delhi with Indian Home Minister P Chidambaram, said progress could be made towards relaxing the laws. "Omar Abdullah said that the gradual improvement in the security scenario and restoration of peace has paved the way for revocation of AFSPA in peaceful areas of the state," a statement from his office said. Earlier this year, UN special rapporteur Margaret Sekaggya demanded the Indian government repeal the AFSPA. Violence has dropped sharply in Held Kashmir since India and Pakistan started a peace process in 2004. But anti-India sentiment still runs deep in the held valley, which last year witnessed some of the biggest protests ever against Indian rule. Over 110 people were killed, mostly by security forces.