Wednesday, July 07, 2010

More deaths in Indian-Administered Kashmir protests

Al Jazeera, July 6, 2010

Farooq called for an end to “killing of innocent
people” in Kashmir [AFP]

Three more people have been killed in continuing unrest in Indian-administered Kashmir after police opened fire on demonstrators venting their anger over recent spate of killings in police firing.

The three, including a 16-year-old-boy, were shot dead on Tuesday after a large crowd took to the streets shouting “We want freedom” and hurled stones at the security forces in the city of Srinagar.

Mohammad Afzal, a police official, said, the fresh protests broke out after a body of a Kashmiri teenager was fished out from a rivulet.

Locals said the boy had jumped into the water in Srinagar and drowned while being chased by security forces during a demonstration on Monday evening.

Police said the teenager had pelted stones at security forces and and set fire to a police building.

Indian security forces have been accused of killing 15 people, mostly protesters, in less than a month in Kashmir, triggering the biggest anti-India demonstrations in the last two years.

Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, a prominent separatist leader who led rallies on Tuesday, called for an end to the ”killing of innocent people”.

“Protests and civil disobedience will continue until India withdraws its security forces from all populated areas, and punish those found guilty,” Farooq said.

“These killings will not deter us from pursuing our goal of independence.”

Separatists in Kashmir have fought against Indian rule for 20 years, campaigning for independence or for the region to join neighbouring Pakistan.

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