Call for Peaceful Means to Address Kashmir Conflict

Call for Peaceful Means to Address Kashmir ConflictCall for Peaceful Means to Address Kashmir Conflict

Iran's Foreign Ministry announced that tensions in Kashmir can only be defused through peaceful means.  

Calling on the sides involved in the dispute to resolve their differences through negotiations, Foreign Ministry spokesman, Bahram Qasemi, on Tuesday expressed regret over the killing of innocent Kashmiris, IRNA reported.

The new flare-up of unrest in the Indian-controlled part of Kashmir, claiming over 40 lives, started 10 days ago after pro-autonomy Hizbul Mujahideen leader Burhan Wani was killed by Indian forces.

The valley has seen mobs pelting stones and attacking camps of armed forces. This has led to counter-attacks by the security personnel. The region has come to a complete standstill due to a curfew, with reports of people being unable to access healthcare facilities.

Principlist lawmaker Mojtaba Zolnouri believes that the Indian government should avoid violence in addressing the issue, as such extreme strategies can definitely help takfiri terrorist groups to penetrate into the region. A takfiri is an extremist who accuses followers of some Islamic sects of apostasy.

The lawmaker noted that the Indian government should be accountable to Kashmiris, as political pressure will yield no results and only spread violence and stir up never-ending conflicts.

The lawmaker hoped that the two sides will strive to restore peace to the region as soon as possible, as the more such disputes continue, the more disastrous consequences will surface.

According to Zolnouri, increased diplomatic efforts should be made to avoid killing innocent people who have played no role in provoking the recent conflicts, yet they have had to pay a heavy price for defending themselves. Highlighting Kashmiris' legal rights to live a peaceful life in the region, Zolnouri said, "Certain groups and individuals are paving the way for spreading takfiri terrorists' approach in Kashmir."

Reports indicate that Kashmir, which has been under a curfew for a week, is running short of essential items, especially medical supplies that are urgently needed.

The police raided printing units of several newspapers and seized the copies of the papers, citing a gag order. Bodies like Editors Guild of India and Indian Journalists Union have called the order an attack on freedom of the press. Cellphone and Internet services have been disabled in large parts of the Kashmir Valley.