South Asian regional orgnisations and networks urge India and Pakistan to de-escalate the violence immediately and resolve bilateral issues for permanent peace in the region

We, undersigned regional networks and organisations, request both India and Pakistan to immediately de-escalate tensions and end the present dangerous impasse.

The reasons for the present escalation is well known and we believe that such instances would recur without dealing with the underlying causes.

India is unwilling or unable to find a political solution to the conflict in Kashmir and has increased repression and persecution of Kashmiri civilian population particularly in the last five years.

In addition, the present Indian government’s alleged triumphalism with a view to garner votes in the forthcoming general election has led to serious escalation after the suicide attack allegedly by the armed group that killed 49 Indian troops in Kashmir on 14 February. Large scale aftermath violence targeting Kashmiri traders and students all over India, as well as arbitrary detention of prominent leaders in Jammu and Kashmir, further alienated and created atmosphere of fear and uncertainty.

Pakistan is unwilling or unable to exercise effective control over armed non-state actors that engage in violent extremism in Afghanistan and in India particularly in the Kashmir region.

We welcome the release of Abhinandan Varthaman, the captured Indian pilot by the Pakistan government.

Limited or unlimited war will not contribute to finding a long term and sustainable solution for the Jammu and Kashmir issue.

We strongly urge the two governments to reach an effective long term solution to all pending bilateral issues through dialogue and diplomatic means without resorting to tactical military operations.

Signed:

  1. South Asians for Human Rights (SAHR)
  2. Women’s Regional Network (WRN)
  3. Civil Society and Human Rights Network, Afghanistan
  4. Odhikar, Bangladesh
  5. Association of Women for Awareness and Motivation (AWAM), Pakistan
  6. Community Self Reliance Centre (CSRC), Nepal
  7. Jammu and Kashmir Coalition of Civil Society (JKCCS), India
  8. Association of Parents of Disappeared Persons, India
  9. South India Cell for Human Rights Education and Monitoring (SICHREM), India
  10. Peoples Watch, India
  11. Peoples Vigilance Committee on Human Rights (PVCHR), India
  12. Human Rights Alert, India
  13. Banglar Manabadhikar Suraksha Mancha (MASUM), India
  14. Society for the Protection of the Rights of the Child (SPARK), Pakistan
  15. National Commission for Peace and Justice (NCJP), Pakistan
  16. Bytes for All, Pakistan
  17. Maldivian Democracy Network (MDN), Maldives
  18. Inform Human Rights Documentation Centre, Sri Lanka
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