[News] Palestinians denounce India's Israeli-style tactics in Kashmir

Anti-Imperialist News news at freedomarchives.org
Thu Aug 15 11:38:07 EDT 2019


  Palestinians denounce India's Israeli-style tactics in Kashmir

Ali Abunimah <https://electronicintifada.net/people/ali-abunimah> - 14 
August 2019


Palestinians are calling for solidarity with Kashmir 
<https://electronicintifada.net/tags/kashmir> following the Indian 
government’s move to revoke the state’s autonomy while imposing an 
unprecedented lockdown.

“As Palestinians, we deeply feel the suffering of the people in Kashmir 
under military repression that in so many cases is similar to Israeli 
forms of subjugation and control,” the Palestinian BDS National 
Committee (BNC) said on Tuesday 

The BNC is the steering group for the boycott, divestment and sanctions 
campaign for Palestinian rights.

The BNC notes that for years India has been “borrowing Israel’s 
methodology and ideology and using Israeli weapons in its control over 

“The Israeli weapons that India uses to oppress Kashmiris have been 
‘field-tested’ on Palestinian bodies,” the BNC states.

“Our campaign for a comprehensive military embargo on Israel, therefore, 
is directly linked to opposing global militarization, including 
militarization of Kashmir.”

India has in recent years been the largest customer 
in the world for Israeli weapons.

    Eight million “incarcerated”

Earlier this month, India’s Hindu nationalist prime minister Narendra 
Modi unilaterally revoked Article 370 of the country’s constitution 
which granted the Indian-ruled part of Kashmir a measure of autonomy.

Modi won re-election 
in a landslide last May.

to Indian writer Pankaj Mishra, the revocation of Article 370 is “part 
of a revanchist fantasy of ‘Akhand Bharat,’ or Undivided India – a 
vision which includes reclaiming the part of Kashmir ruled by Pakistan.”

“The government prepared for its bombshell … with a massive infusion of 
security forces into Kashmir, which is already one of the most 
militarized places on earth,” Mishra states.

“It ordered the house arrests of opposition leaders and evacuation of 
Indian students and tourists, an indefinite curfew, and the shutdown of 
all modes of communications, including telephone landlines.”

Indian-ruled Kashmir remains cut off from the world 
especially the populous Kashmir Valley.

“You can say that the entire eight million population has been 
incarcerated like never before,” according 
to Shah Faesal, a former official in the Indian civil service who now 
heads a Kashmiri political party.

Indian state media have tried to claim 
that the situation in Kashmir is “normal and peaceful.”

The government hopes that by isolating Kashmir 
it can prevent news of its repression of protests from reaching the 
outside world.

But news has nonetheless come out on how Indian forces are using tear 
and pellet guns 
<https://thewire.in/video/watch-kashmir-srinagar-pellet-victims> against 

“The history of atrocities and human rights violations are not new to 
Kashmir,” the BNC states.

“Human rights groups have recorded extrajudicial killings, arbitrary 
detentions, torture, rape, enforced disappearances, mass blindings and 
suppression of protest and democratic expression, along with legal 
immunity to armed forces for over 30 years.”

    Rule by force

The status of Kashmir has been in dispute 
<https://www.bbc.com/news/world-south-asia-16069078> since British-ruled 
India was partitioned in 1947 and gained independence as modern India 
and Pakistan.

India controls more than half the territory of Kashmir, including the 
Kashmir Valley. Pakistan controls about a third of the territory, and 
China the rest.

In 1947, Pakistani militias entered part of Kashmir. Following this, the 
princely ruler of Kashmir, a Hindu, chose to join his Muslim-majority 
state to Hindu-dominated, but constitutionally secular, India.

India’s first prime minister, Jawaharlal Nehru, promised 
<https://www.mtholyoke.edu/acad/intrel/nehru1.htm> that the people of 
Kashmir would be given a referendum on whether they wanted to remain 
part of India.

In 1948, the UN Security Council backed the referendum.

However, the plebiscite has never been held and India has ruled the 
territory by force rather than consent.

    Emulating Israel

Modi’s move against Kashmir and its people looks a lot like how Israel 
has unilaterally annexed Syria’s occupied Golan Heights and Palestine’s 
occupied East Jerusalem.

Israel now appears to be moving towards annexation 
of the rest of occupied West Bank.

Since the rise to power of Modi’s Hindu nationalist BJP, India has 
increasingly turned to Israel 
as a model for its brutal repression 
of resistance to its rule in Kashmir.

“Today, the Modi government has literally taken inspiration from 
Israel’s settlement project to enable forced demographic changes on the 
ground,” according to the BNC.

Indian government efforts to manipulate the demographics of Kashmir by 
moving Hindus into the state have previously been described 
even in Israeli media as “an Israel-style policy of creating settlements 
in occupied territory.”

    Call for solidarity

In addition to the unprecedented repression in Kashmir, Modi’s move is 
escalating tensions with Pakistan, which like India possesses nuclear 

India and Pakistan have already fought three wars over Kashmir.

“We call for international pressure on the government of India to 
reverse its latest measures that violate the rights of the people of 
Kashmir under international law and to recognize and respect those 
rights,” the BNC states.

It also appeals to “people of conscience in India” to “work towards 
ending India’s military and security alliance with Israel.”

This would “end India’s shameful complicity in Israel’s suppression of 
Palestinian freedom, justice and equality,” the BNC says.

It would “also benefit the struggle for the rights of the people of 
Kashmir, as well as the social and economic justice struggles of the 
people of India.”

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