India lashes out at Pak over J&K; asks it to vacate POK

India, Pakistan, Jammu and Kashmir

New Delhi: Following tense situation in the valley, India on Thursday lashed out at Pakistan for “inciting and supporting” terrorism in Jammu and Kashmir and instead asked it to vacate its illegal occupation of Pakistan-occupied-Kashmir (POK).

In a sharp reaction over anti-India rallies being held in Pakistan and other statements emanating from there over the situation in Kashmir, External Affairs Ministry said India strongly condemns encouragement and support to UN-designated terrorists and their activities from Pakistan.

Ministry Spokesperson Vikas Swarup also said that in view of the threats of marches and protests at the High Commission of India in Islamabad, Pakistan should ensure full safety and security of Indian officials and their families there,

“We have seen reports about rallies, events and statements related to J&K in Pakistan and POK over the last two days. We have also noted that the events were led by UN- designated terrorists, who had in the past protested the elimination of dreaded terrorists including Osama bin Laden and Taliban leader Akhtar Mansour in Pakistan.

“India strongly condemns the encouragement and support which such terrorists and their activities receive from Pakistan?s state.

“We once again ask Pakistan to stop inciting and supporting violence and terrorism in any part of our country and refrain from its deplorable meddling in our internal affairs in any manner,” the Spokesperson said.

Asserting that the observance of ‘Kashmir?s Accession to Pakistan Day’ exposes Pakistan?s longing for the territory of J&K, Swarup said,”India demands that Pakistan must fulfil the obligation to vacate its illegal occupation of POK.”

India also asked Pakistan to stop “misleading the international community and Kashmiris through meaningless exercises such as the so-called elections on Thursday in POK which Pakistan ironically calls ?Azad? (free).

At least 43 people have died and more than 3,000 have been injured in the violence that erupted in Kashmir after the killing of 22-year-old terrorist Burhan Wani by security forces on July 8. India has accused Pakistan of not only pushing in terrorists but also fanning discontent within the Valley by providing support to terrorist outfits in fomenting the recent trouble in Kashmir.

Pakistan used Wani’s killing to needle India at the United Nations and issued statements where it accused India of atrocities in Kashmir. Pakistan also observed ‘Black Day’ on July 19 to express solidarity with the people of the Valley over the killing of Wani.

(With PTI inputs)


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