Asiapeace condemns the slaughter of Kashmiri Pandits.
01 Apr 2003
Stockholm. March 26. Dr. Ishtiaq Ahmed, Associate Professor, Department of Political Science, Stockholm University and Moderator Asiapeace - An electronic discussion group have said on behalf of millions of members of Asiapeace around the world that
Professor Ishtiaq said "Asiapeace condemns the slaughter of 24 innocent men, women and children from the minority Hindu community of Kashmiri Pandits in the village of Nadimarg, 80 km south of Srinagar on the night of 24 March".
Its said that The cold-blooded, heavily-armed killers, dressed in Indian army uniforms, entered the village around midnight and systematically picked out 24 men, women and children from amongst the Kashmiri Pandit population, lined them up and shot them dead with automatic weapons without compunction. Among those killed were 10 women and two children, both aged two. The majority of the men killed were above the age of 60.
"We do not know who the killers were but whosoever they were and whatever cause they were in the service of, they have earned universal revulsion. We hope they will be apprehended and brought to justice". Said Dr. Ishtiaq
The brutality in Kashmir springs from the underlying issue of the State's future dispensation. While India maintains that Kashmir is an integral part of the Indian Union and, hence, non-negotiable, Pakistan and a large number of Kashmiris believe that its final status remains to be determined. Given goodwill and trust, there is no problem in the world that cannot be amicably settled. We, therefore, urge India and Pakistan to resume their long-interrupted dialogue, of which the representatives of the people of the former princely state should form a part.
Asiapeace urged the Pakistan government and the authorities in Muzaffarabad to take internationally credible steps to ensure that armed infiltration into the Indian-administered parts of the State comes to an end. The extirpation of non-Kashmiri elements in Kashmir is the first essential. Kashmir is not a religious dispute and any attempt to treat it as one can only produce catastrophic results.