ISLAMABAD - The Senate yesterday strongly condemned the recent wave of brutal killings of innocent people in Indian-occupied Kashmir and demanded the government highlight the matter on all international forums and take all possible measures at diplomatic level to resolve this long-standing issue.

In a resolution moved by Syed Muhashid Hussain Syed on behalf of all members, the upper house of parliament strongly condemned maiming of boys and girls by the Indian forces in the occupied valley.

Kashmiris, particularly youth, have been protesting the killing of young Kashmiri freedom fighter Burhan Wani in a gun battle with the police on July 8.

As many as 45 people have been killed and over 3,500 injured in firing by Indian troops on the protesters since then. The shortage of essential commodities has hit the territory as curfew remained in place in all of its 10 districts for the 10th consecutive day.

The Senate resolution called upon the international human rights organisations, the United Nations, the OIC and the world community to take notice of these atrocities and take appropriate steps for stoppage of the same.

The house also demanded the UN to get implemented its resolutions without any further delay and to take effective steps for fair and free plebiscite in Kashmir under its own supervision.

STRIKE ON ACCESSION TO PAKISTAN DAY

As the people in Indian-held Kashmir as well Azad Kashmir and Pakistan are observing Accession to Pakistan Day today, All Parties Hurriyet Conference leader Syed Ali Gilani, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and Yasin Malik in their joint statement yesterday issued a protests calendar for three days starting from today (Tuesday).

The statement appealed to the people to observe complete shutdown and observe Black Day on Tuesday when people across Pakistan would also mark this day. The strike will be observed on Thursday and Friday as well in held-Kashmir.

UNREST CONTINUES

A youth club established by Indian army was set on fire in Bandipora on Monday. In another development, Indian paramilitary Border Security Force had to evacuate its post known as Water Point taken over by the BSF in 1969 after consistent attacks by youth during the past 10 days of protests in Nuso area of Bandipora district.

BLOCKADE

According to KMS, all communication contacts with the outside world remain severed due to the continued blockade of internet and phone services.

The closure of all roads including the Srinagar-Jammu highway has made the access to commodities almost impossible for the already curfew-hit people of Kashmir. The situation in Baramulla and Kupwara districts is grimmer where people are cut off from rest of the territory.

Editors denounce newspapers ban

Our special correspondent in Washington cited a report by The Washington Post stating that newspaper editors in occupied Kashmir are angry and are calling the New Delhi-ordered shut down of newspapers a full-blown information war.

The ban on newspapers came on top of the shutdown of cable TV operators and private cellphone service, actions imposed by the government as it struggles to control angry street protests.

“This is information blockade. Newspapers are not a threat to peace. We are not parasites,” Shujaat Bukhari, editor of the Rising Kashmir newspaper in Srinagar, was quoted as saying in a dispatch from New Delhi. “Newspapers are responsible institutions. We publish corroborated, verified news. In its absence, what are people relying on? This ban is not helping the situation at all here.”

On Saturday, security forces raided printing presses and seized copies of newspapers in the state, and there has been no paper for the third consecutive day.

The ban may last at least until Wednesday, a government official told editors, according to the report.

“Kashmir gagged,” said the headline in the Indian Express newspaper on Sunday in New Delhi. On Sunday, the Indian Journalists Union said this was “unacceptable in a democracy.”

IFG CONDEMNS MEDIA BAN

The International Federation of Journalists in a statement strongly condemned the ongoing media crackdown by Indian authorities in Jammu and Kashmir. The IFJ while expressing its solidarity with Kashmiri journalists urged the authorities to immediately stop the crackdown on press freedom.

The Editors Guild of India in its statement also denounced the media gag in the territory. Newspapers were not published for the third straight day, today, following a ban imposed by the puppet authorities.

PROTEST IN NEW YORK

On the other hand, hundreds of Kashmiri Americans and friends of Kashmir staged a peaceful protest in front of the Indian Mission to the United Nations to express their anguish over the killings of innocent civilians in Kashmir. The Kashmir Council EU organised an event of candle light vigil in Brussels, the capital of Belgium, to express solidarity with oppressed people of occupied Kashmir.

HRW FOR PROBE INTO POLICE BRUTALITY

Human Rights Watch called on Indian authorities to credibly and impartially investigate police use of force during protests in Kashmir.

“Rock-throwing at demonstrations is serious but does not provide police a free pass to use force against protesters,” Meenakshi Ganguly, South Asia director at Human Rights Watch, said.