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Fallacious, motivated: India rejects United Nations rights body report on Kashmir

14 June 2018

India on Thursday slammed a United Nations report that alleged human rights violations in Kashmir, terming it "fallacious, tendentious and motivated". "We question the intent in bringing out such a report", its foreign ministry spokesman said in a statement. It added that the report is a selective compilation of largely unverified information.

It violated the country's sovereignty and territorial integrity, it said. It declared that India would continue to take measures to deal with cross-border terrorism in Kashmir. "Pakistan is in illegal and forcible occupation of a part of the Indian state through aggression", the MEA said.

"Our protest and views in the matter have been conveyed unequivocally to the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights". The incorrect description of Indian territory in the report is mischievous, misleading and unacceptable.

MEA also refused the false equivalence between India and Pakistan, saying, " There can't be any comparison between Jammu and Kashmir and Pakistan-occupied Kashmir as "the former has a democratically elected government while the latter has seen a Pakistani diplomat arbitrarily appointed as its head".

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"The contents, scale and the narrative of killings, maiming, abuse and impunity articulated in the report is a reaffirmation of what Pakistan has long highlighted for the global community".

The UN human rights body chief, Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein, has called for an investigation into "all civilian killings since July 2016" and also into "the excessive use of force by security forces including serious injuries caused by the use of pellet guns immediately".

Noting the continuing serious tensions in recent weeks, including those stemming from a series of incidents in Srinagar, he called on Indian security forces to exercise maximum restraint, and strictly abide by worldwide standards governing the use of force when dealing with future protests, including ones that could well occur this coming weekend. "The motivated report deliberately ignores that fundamental rights and freedoms guaranteed under the Constitution to every Indian citizen, including in the state of Jammu & Kashmir, are protected also by an independent judiciary, human rights commissions, free and vibrant media and an active civil society".

The report said the United Nations body chief met with representatives of both governments following an upsurge of violence in July 2016 after the killing of Hizbul Mujahideen terrorist Burhan Wani by security forces. "The Congress supports the government's stand", said the party.

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One of the most unsafe weapons used against protesters in 2016 - and which is still being employed by security forces - was the pellet-firing shotgun. There are no entities such as "Azad Jammu and Kashmir" and "Gilgit-Baltistan".

"This gives security forces virtual immunity against prosecution for any human rights violation".

Muslim-majority Kashmir is divided between nuclear-armed India and Pakistan, who both claim the mountainous region in full and have fought two of their three wars over it since their separation in 1947.

New Delhi has long accused Islamabad of training and arming fighters and helping them infiltrate across the heavily militarised Line of Control (LoC) that separates the two sides in the region, a charge Islamabad denies.

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Fallacious, motivated: India rejects United Nations rights body report on Kashmir