UN Security Council to hold rare closed-door meeting on Kashmir today

The United Nations Security Council holds a consultative meeting on Friday to discuss the Kashmir issue as Pakistan urges the world body to implement its own resolutions on this 70-year-old dispute. — Reuters  File

Thousands protest for Kashmir, ahead of Security Council meeting

Background: India maintains that its decision to strip Jammu and Kashmir of its autonomous status is an internal matter, while Pakistan is attempting to contest New Delhi's decision by raising the issue on an worldwide stage. The officials said most of the shops and business establishments in the districts reopened but educational institutions remained closed and are likely to reopen from Monday.

Mobile internet connections have been restored in five districts in the Jammu region. Kashmir is divided between India and Pakistan but claimed by both in its entirety.

Mian Zahid Hussain said civilian and military leaders are on the same page on Kashmir issue, people are protesting Indian move inside India, in the United Kingdom and other countries, while the Black Day has sent a very positive signal. India's military denied that any of its forces were killed. "And this is what both India and Pakistan say that they also want".

China on Friday said that India's decision to remove Article 370 on Jammu and Kashmir and bifurcate the state into two union territories through constitutional amendments had challenged its sovereign interests and violated bilateral agreements.

He said Pakistan has made a huge achievement in the form of UNSC meeting discussing the issue of Occupied Kashmir. "There is no chance of bilateral talks until the curfew is lifted in Kashmir". I request Indian army not to kill us, I beg them. He also stressed that in the 12 days since the announcement there has not been a single loss of life.

A small counter-demonstration was kept apart from the main protest by the police. A group of women marching separately chanted: "We nurtured this Kashmir with our blood, this Kashmir is ours".

Bahrain, rocked in recent years by Arab Spring protests, reported that a number of people were arrested after South Asian residents held a protest there in support of Kashmir and against India after Sunday's Muslim prayers for the Eid al-Adha holiday.

Paramilitary troops intercepted them at Mehjoor Nagar bridge, leading to violent clashes and stone-throwing by some of the protesters, according to a Reuters eyewitness.

"We are a billion-plus people", India's United Nations envoy Syed Akbaruddin said after the meeting.

The state's Chief Secretary BVR Subrahmanyam had said Friday there would be a "gradual" restoration of phone lines over the weekend, with schools to resume classes in some areas next week.

Despite the relaxation, the situation is still far from normal in Kashmir.

Hundreds of people, including local politicians, remain in detention.

A senior government official said authorities had booked 58 rooms in the hotel.

He said the meeting was being held to understand what is happening.

Addressing a joint press conference with Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi following a meeting of the country's top brass on the situation in Kashmir, Army spokesman Major Gen Asif Ghafoor said it was possible India could launch an attack to divert the world's attention from Kashmir.

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