British MPs ask David Cameron to raise Kashmir issue with Modi during his meeting

LONDON: British parliamentarians urge for break of deadlock on Kashmir amid Modi’s visit to the United Kingdom. In a letter written to the Prime Minister David Cameron , Chairman of the All-Party Parliamentary Kashmir Group Andrew Griffiths MP asked Prime Minister to intervene and use his offices to resolve the long standing issue. We therefore ask you to raise the following six issues with Mr Modi , which we believe are of particular importance. First, there are approximately 550,000 Indian troops in the region of Kashmir administered from New Delhi. We call for the withdrawal of all such forces currently posted in the region’s cities, although we accept the political reality that some troops may need to remain on the Line of Control. Second, we join the UN and countless human rights organisations in asking for the repeal of the Armed Forces’ special powers, or ‘Black Laws’, which empower Indian military and paramilitary soldiers to use force with impunity, and to detain civilians without proper cause. Thirdly, we believe that pressure should be applied towards the release of the thousands of Kashmiri political prisoners. Fourthly, we would ask you to raise the possibility of removing all travel restrictions which prevent members of civic society from moving about the country. Fifthly, we believe that an investigation should take place into the mass graves which have been reported to exist from the time of Kashmir’s insurgency against Indian rule. It must surely be possible for both sides to agree that the people who died in this conflict should be buried with proper reverence, rather than being shamefully heaped in the ground. Finally, we are concerned about the lack of progress in finding a peaceful resolution to issues in Jammu and Kashmir.

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