A day after visiting Pakistan prime minister Nawaz Sharif skipped the K-word, the conglomerate of militant groups operating in Kashmir, United Jehad Council (UJC), expressed unhappiness and pledged to continue attacks in the state.
In an e-mailed statement to the Hindustan Times, Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK)-based UJC, which has 13 militant groups, including Lashkar-e-Toiba, Jamiat-ul-Mujahideen and Hizbul Mujahideen as members, asked prime minister Narendra Modi to end ‘military occupation’ of Kashmir or face continued violence and militancy.
“If Modi wants an end to violence and militancy in J-K, he should end state terrorism and military occupation there,” said UJC spokesman Jameel-ur-Rehman, also a militant leader of Tehreek-ul-Mujahideen.
Hinting at stepping up attacks against the security forces, Rehman said, “We are not enemies of Indian people. Our targets are the security forces, which are busy in genocide of unarmed civilians. Our struggle is not against any nation, community, race or for power, but against suppression and illegal occupation.”
In a very strongly-worded statement, the UJC spokesman said the militants will attack the army wherever they are in the state. “We have picked up guns because of India’s intransigence. We will attack the army and there is no way we can shun the path of armed struggle. To fight against suppression is not a crime and it is not terrorism,” he added.
The umbrella militant group also lashed out at Pakistan, just a day after Sharif met prime minister Modi for 50 minutes. Pakistan PM’s decision to skip the K-word in the press conference has also not gone well with the militant groups.
“Pakistan should not engage with India at the cost of Kashmir. We warn that after Kashmir, Pakistan will be the next target of Modi,” said Rehman.
“Those expecting positive and fruitful outcome by holding talks with Modi, who are responsible for killings of Muslims are daydreaming,” he added.
The militant groups also targeted the mainstream parties in the statement.
The angry statement has come as visiting Pakistan prime minister deliberately decided not to see the separatist leadership as has been the trend in the past. Besides, Sharif avoided Kashmir word during his press conference.