Tuesday 24 September, 2019

Restrictions continue in Kashmir despite security ease

Indian paramilitary soldiers turn back a Kashmiri motorist near a temporary check point during lockdown in Srinagar, Indian controlled Kashmir, Sunday, Aug. 18, 2019. (AP Photo/ Dar Yasin)

Indian paramilitary soldiers turn back a Kashmiri motorist near a temporary check point during lockdown in Srinagar, Indian controlled Kashmir, Sunday, Aug. 18, 2019. (AP Photo/ Dar Yasin)

Restrictions are continuing in much of Indian-administered Kashmir, despite India's government saying it's gradually restoring phone lines and easing a security lockdown that's been in place for nearly two weeks.

Soldiers on Sunday still manned nearly deserted streets and limited movement of the few pedestrians who came out of their homes in Srinagar, the region's main city.

The security crackdown and a news blackout were installed following an Aug. 5 decision by India to downgrade the Muslim-majority region's autonomy. Indian authorities started easing restrictions on Saturday.

On Sunday, Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan demanded that U.N. observers be sent to the region, but Indian Defense Minister Rajnath Singh dismissed the idea.

Kashmir is divided between Pakistan and India, but both claim the Himalayan region in its entirety.

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