Stand with the people of Jammu and Kashmir!

Issued by the Office of the Chairperson International League of Peoples’ Struggle 14 August 2019

The International League of Peoples’ Struggle (ILPS) fully supports the legitimate demands of the people of Jammu and Kashmir to assert their sovereignty. We urge the immediate lifting of the communication lockdown and political restriction imposed by the Indian government and warn against any form of foreign intervention asked by Pakistan from the United States, European Union and the UN Security Council.

India and Pakistan, both nuclear powers, are resorting to big nation chauvinism and bullying on the State of Jammu and Kashmir to divide and exploit the Himalayan region and its people.

The big bourgeois Bharatiya Janata Party of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi which came to power in 2014, with its traditional upper-caste support, decided to revoke Article 370 of the Constitution of India granting special autonomy to the state. This allowed non-residents to buy property in the area and exploit the working people. It effectively blocked the right of the people of Jammu and Kashmir to statehood and frame their own laws. A reorganization was also sought to divide the union and the people into two territories — Jammu and Kashmir, and Ladakh.

Since the August 5 decision, telephone lines, internet and television networks have been blocked. Restrictions on movement and assembly were enforced and more than 300 political leaders and activists detained. The Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act enabled the Indian army in “disturbed areas” to “hold prisoners without trial”. Pakistan, for its part, threatens to redeploy troops from the Afghanistan border and asked the United States, the European Union and the UN to mediate.

India and Pakistan have been locked in conflict since their establishment in 1947. They have fought four wars, three of which were directly related to Kashmir (1965, 1971, 1990). US direct aggression in Afghanistan never helped ease tension in the region but only aggravated it. The Kashmir border shared by China complicates it further with the current imperialist rivalry of both powers.

It is not for India, Pakistan, the US, or China to decide the fate of the people of Jammu and Kashmir. The people have the right to full and genuine independence. Their resistance deserves the active support of the anti-imperialist solidarity of all freedom-loving peoples.

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