A pro-independence group on Wednesday condemned the police assault on its leaders in Pakistani Kashmir, who were opposing President Asif Ali Zardari's visit to the "disputed region".
Police allegedly assaulted dozens of Jammu Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF) leaders in Muzaffarabad, the capital of Pakistani Kashmir, Tuesday when they were holding "peaceful" protests and were objecting to Zardari's trip to the region which is a subject of dispute between India and Pakistan..
"Hundreds of our activists had gathered in Muzaffarabad and other parts of (Pakistani )Kashmir on Tuesday to demonstrate against Zardari's visit to the disputed region," said a JKLF statement emailed to IANS from London where the group operates its unit.
The JKLF campaigns for an independent Jammu and Kashmir, the state which is divided between the two countries.
"We strongly condemns the heavy baton charge of its leaders and their subsequent arrests in Muzaffarabad," the statement said
"Top leadership of the JKLF have been severely injured after they were severely beaten up by the Pakistani police. Such indiscriminate baton charge on peaceful demonstrators will not weaken the Kashmiris' resolve for an independent state. Such oppressive and cruel measures will not dampen the struggle for national dignity of Kashmiris," it added.