Pulwama attack: Joint Resistance ‘regrets every killing that happens on Kashmiri soil’, says ‘death dance has to stop’

The Joint Resistance Leadership (JRL) comprising Syed Ali Geelani, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and Mohammad Yasin Malik on Friday while commenting over the Lethpora incident said that ‘people and leadership of Kashmir regret every killing that happens on its soil.’

49 armed forces personnel were killed in a suicide bomb attack in Lethpora area along the Srinagar-Jammu highway in south Kashmir’s Pulwama district, Thursday afternoon.

An official of the CRPF said that a “suicide car bomber” rammed an explosive-laden vehicle into the bus near Lethpora at around 03:15 pm, resulting into an intensive blast.

“As we witness killing of our loved ones our young, and shoulder their coffins each day we can feel and understand the pain and sense of loss that the family and friends of those who are  killed go through, not for a day or two when everyone is expressing grief and condolences to them ,but the silent grief and loss that stays with them for a lifetime,” the joint statement said.

Joint Resistance said that the delay in the resolution of the Kashmir dispute, the denial to engage with the sentiments and aspirations of the people of JK and instead the use of a muscular military approach to counter an essentially political and human problem, is wreaking havoc in Kashmir especially on the next generation and consuming them. “Those who are here to execute this policy are also under stress and paying a price with their lives,” the leadership said.

“JRL said that if this death dance has to stop, if hatred and revenge has to stop, if killing and counter killings has to stop and if we really want peace in the region we have to put an end to hostilities. And the most effective and civilised manner to do so, is to reach out and engage and listen to the concerns of all three stakeholders and address them in the spirit of humanity and justice. Resolve the Kashmir dispute for all times,” they added in their statement.

Militant outfit Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) has claimed responsibility of the attack.

A JeM spokesperson Muhammad Hassan in a statement issued to news agency GNS said “dozens of forces’ vehicles were destroyed in the attack”. The spokesperson identified the driver (of JeM) who carried out the ‘fidayeen’ attack as Aadil Ahmad alias Waqas Commando of Gundi Bagh, Pulwama.

GNS reported, citing official sources, that the traffic will remain suspended on the Lethpora highway for some time as the teams from National Investigation Agency (NIA) and National Security Guard (NSG) are arriving today to assist the Jammu and Kashmir police in forensic evaluation of the scene of the attack.

IGP Kashmir SP Pani had said that it was a gruesome attack. “The investigations have been taken up. We have started gathering the sequences how this happened and the people behind it will be brought before the law,” the IGP said, adding, “We are ascertaining chain of circumstances in this incident.”

Meanwhile, Indian Air Force C-17 aircraft will airlift the mortal remains of CRPF personnel killed in the attack.

Former Prime Minister of India Manmohan Singh said that they would ‘not compromise with terrorists’.

“Today is a day of mourning. Our country has lost close to 40 jawans and our foremost duty is to convey to the families of those who have lost their lives and those seriously injured that we are with them in condemning this act of terrorism,”Singh said. “We will not compromise with terrorists and whatever the country requires, we will act as one nation. Our role today is to convey to soldiers and families our sympathies. The Congress party stands with them and we will do all that is necessary to keep this country united.”

Congress chief Rahul Gandhi said that the Opposition stood with ‘the jawans and our government’.

“Aim of terrorism is to divide this country. We won’t be divided even for a second. Opposition stands with our jawans and with our government,” Congress President Rahul Gandhi said. “This is a terrible tragedy. This type of violence done against our soldiers is absolutely disgusting. We are all standing together with our jawans. This is a time of mourning, sadness, and respect.”

Finance Minister of India Arun Jaitley addressing the media after the meeting, said that the Most Favoured Nation (MFN) for Pakistan has been withdrawn.

“MEA will initiate all possible diplomatic steps which are to be taken to ensure the complete isolation from the international community of Pakistan of which incontrovertible is available of having a direct hand in this act,” Jaitley said.

Modi paid tribute to the personnel who had lost their lives in the attack, ANI reported.

“Those who did this should realise that threat dream of dividing this country has to be dropped. We will not let those who wish to demolish our economically feel succeeded,” he said. “Several countries have condemned this attack and have promised to stand by India. We all will have to fight against this terror together. When every country will start acting against it, terror will not sustain for long.”

Meanwhile, former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Omar Abdullah severely criticized Governor Satya Pal Malik, and accused him of “failing” to carry out his “primary responsibility” and asked him to visit those injured in the Pulwama attack and take stock of the situation.

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