NEW DELHI: The European Union asked the Indian government to “lift the remaining restrictions” in J&K “swiftly” while acknowledging that India had taken positive steps to restore normalcy. The statement came even as NSA Ajit Doval met with the envoys just back from their visit to Kashmir on Friday.
Following a visit to J&K by 25 foreign envoys, which included some European Union ambassadors, the EU issued a statement from Brussels on Friday, saying: “The visit confirmed that the Government of India has taken positive steps to restore normalcy. Some restrictions remain, notably on internet access and mobile services, and some political leaders are still in detention. While we recognise the serious security concerns, it is important that the remaining restrictions be lifted swiftly,” the statement from Virginie Battu-Henriksson, EU spokesperson for foreign affairs and security policy, read.
It said the programme by the government “included meetings with civil and military authorities, political representatives, as well as selected members of civil and business community…The visit presented a welcome opportunity to see the situation on the ground and to interact with local interlocutors.”
The EU statement comes days before foreign minister S Jaishankar is scheduled to travel to Brussels for talks with EU and to prepare for PM Modi’s forthcoming summit in Brussels scheduled for March 13. Meanwhile, others like the Afghan ambassador Tahir Qadiry went on record to say it was “great to come to Kashmir, it’s good to see the ‘mehman nawaz’ people of Kashmir.”
Uganda’s high commissioner to India Dinah Grace Akello was quoted as saying: “People I have been talking to want this region to be developed. I see a lot of hope now.”


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