Occupied Kashmir sees 229 killings in first half of 2020: report

SRINAGAR: Indian occupied Kashmir has seen at least 229 killings during more than 100 military operations since January, a rights group said on Wednesday.

The Jammu and Kashmir Coalition of Civil Society (JKCCS), which operates in the region, said in its bi-annual report that from January 1 to June 30, the region witnessed the extrajudicial executions of at least 32 civilians and the killing of 54 armed forces personnel.

It also saw 55 internet shutdowns and the destruction of 48 structures, it said.

The report said three children and two women were also killed, while at least “107 cordon and search operations and cordon and destroy operations were conducted in the region”.

In addition, during search operations and encounters, “vandalism and destruction of civilian properties were reported”.

Media muzzled

The report said that in the first six months of 2020, the media continued to be at the receiving end of pressure, intimidation and harassment by authorities, with several incidents involving the beating of journalists.

“Besides physical assaults, a few Kashmir-based journalists were also booked under stringent charges and cases were filed against them,” it said.

The report noted that the police filed cases against two Kashmiri journalists under the Unlawful Activities Act, which clearly infringes on the right to freedom of expression and freedom of the press as “such tactics signal a forewarning for media personnel to adhere to the state narrative”. - AA