Line (out) of Control Flare Up: UN Concerned on Kashmir situation, repeats Guetteres’ spokesperson

UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres

Srinagar: The United Nations (UN) has expressed concern over the escalating tensions between India and Pakistan following Thursday’s firing across the Line of Control (LoC) by Indian and Pakistani troops which resulted in at least three civilian deaths across the de facto border.

“The situation (in Kashmir) continues to be of concern to us,” UN Secretary-General Antonio Guetteres’ spokesperson said in response to a question by a Pakistani journalist at the regular noon briefing.

Two civilians were killed after Indian troops allegedly fired across LoC, said Pakistan administered Kashmir (PaK) authorities while one Indian labourer died in Poonch district of Jammu and Kashmir after Indian army blamed Pakistani troops of firing mortar shells across the border.

“The secretary-general is monitoring the situation … he is watching,” the spokesperson, Stephane Dujarric, added.

The UN has repeated the same statement for many a times now after Guetteres’ took over the trans-national body early this year.

In Islamabad, Pakistan protested against India’s firing and urged New Delhi government to respect the 2003 ceasefire agreement at a meeting with Indian Deputy High Commissioner J P Singh, who was summoned to office.

“Indian troops opened fire at Battal, Jandrot and Hotspring sectors at [the] LoC,” a statement issued by Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) had said on early Thursday.

On Thursday, the army posted along LoC in J&K said that the shelling by Pakistani troops across the LoC resulte din the death of one labourer and injuries to five others.

Last week, a woman had been killed in a similar alleged ceasefire violation by Indian troops in PaK.

Farzand Begum, 60, wife of Noor Hussain, perished when a shell landed on her house and exploded. She was a resident of Naali village in Bhimber district.

Pakistan Foreign Office yesterday said the ongoing LoC skirmishes are aimed at “diverting attention from Kashmir Dispute”.

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