The Foreign Office (FO) on Sunday condemned the “barbaric” killing of three people in the Indian army’s custody in held Kashmir, saying that the incident had exposed the neighbouring country’s “relentless state terrorism” in the occupied valley.

A day earlier, the Associated Press had reported that three Kashmiris were tortured to death while in Indian army custody. The report stated that according to locals and residents, the army had arrested “at least eight civilians” for interrogation in the wake of an attack on two army vehicles in Poonch.

“Locals accused army personnel of torturing the three to death in a nearby military camp. The bodies were later handed to the local police who in turn contacted the families. Residents said the bodies bore marks of severe torture,” the report stated.

According to the families, the other five were moved to an army hospital after they were “severely tortured”.

The report added that videos purportedly showing the “torture of detained civilians” spread online hours after their detention and triggered “widespread anger”.

“Authorities cut off internet services on smart devices in Poonch and Rajouri on Saturday morning, a common tactic to dispel possible protests and discourage dissemination of the videos,” the report said.

In a statement issued today, the FO said that it strongly condemned the “barbaric custodial killing” of the three Kashmiris.

“The slain civilians were tortured to death at a camp of the Indian occupation army. A purported video clip of Indian personnel stripping three men and sprinkling chilli powder on them is viral on social media,” the FO said.

“The incident, once again, exposes India’s relentless state terrorism in Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IIOJK). The perpetrators of these custodial killings must be held accountable,” it added.

“India’s brutal occupation is the root cause of all major issues in IIOJK. The Kashmiri people must realise their inalienable right to self-determination, as enshrined in the relevant UN Security Council resolutions,” it said.

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