PM Imran, UK counterpart Boris Johnson discuss 'serious situation in Kashmir'

Updated 08 Aug 2019

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Prime Minister Imran Khan, UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson. — Reuters/Imran Khan Facebook
Prime Minister Imran Khan, UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson. — Reuters/Imran Khan Facebook

Prime Minister Imran Khan on Wednesday made a telephone call to his UK counterpart, Boris Johnson, during which a discussion on the "serious situation in Kashmir" was held, Johnson's Downing Street office said in a statement.

Both leaders agreed on the "importance of maintaining dialogue", the statement added.

The prime minister congratulated PM Johnson on assuming office as the UK prime minister. Both leaders underscored their "continued commitment to the bilateral relationship between the UK and Pakistan".

In a parallel development, Britain's Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said he had expressed concern to his Indian counterpart about the situation in the disputed Kashmir region.

“I have to spoken to the Indian Foreign Minister,” Raab said on Wednesday.

“We've expressed some of our concerns around the situation and called for calm, but also had a clear readout of the situation from the perspective of the Indian government.”

Examine: India's legislative actions in Jammu and Kashmir — legal or illegal?

After India decided to revoke Kashmir's special status by repealing Article 370 and 35-A of its constitution through a presidential order, Pakistan said it would downgrade diplomatic relations and suspend bilateral trade with India.

With the revocation of Article 370 of the constitution, Indian residents will now be able to acquire property in Kashmir and settle there permanently.

Kashmiris, as well as critics of India’s Hindu nationalist-led government, see the move as an attempt to bring a demographic change to Kashmir, diluting its Muslim-majority population with Hindu settlers.

Furthermore, Indian Home Minister Amit Shah, who is also president of the BJP, moved a bill — passed by the Indian parliament — to bifurcate the state into two union territories to be directly ruled by New Delhi.