Kashmir Killings: Civilians need to be protected wherever they are, says UN Chief

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UN Chief Antonio Guterres

United Nations: UN chief Antonio Guterres is “very concerned” over the situation in Jammu and Kashmir and wants all member states to protect their civilians, his spokesperson has said.

His remarks came after twenty people, including 13 militants, four civilians and three soldiers, were killed in three gunfights in Shopian and Anantnag districts on Sunday.

“The Secretary-General is, indeed, very concerned about the situation that we’ve seen in Jammu and Kashmir. He reminds that Member States are responsible under international humanitarian law to protect civilians,” Stephane Dujarric, spokesman for the UN Secretary-General, told reporters here at his daily press briefing yesterday.

He said the Secretary-General reiterated his call on nations to find ways to address disputes in a peaceful manner.

He added that civilians need to be protected wherever they are, “whether it’s in Gaza, whether it’s in Jammu and Kashmir, or whether it’s in Yemen. It’s a basic principle of this organisation.”

When asked if the Secretary General is calling for an investigation into the matter, Dujarric said “any loss of civilians needs to be investigated wherever they occur”.

The following is a complete thread from Daily Press Briefing by the Office of the Spokesperson for the Secretary-General concerning Jammu & Kashmir.

Question: Thank you. Stéphane, on… on the killing of 22… 20 civilians in occupied Jammu and Kashmir, including three children, by the Indian armed forces, has this… will the Secretary‑General call for similar reform… investigation into what led to this latest killing by the Indian security forces? And will there be similar reaction from him as in case of Palestinians?

Spokesman: The Secretary‑General is, indeed, very concerned about the situation that we’ve seen in Jammu and Kashmir. He reminds that Member States are responsible under international humanitarian law to protect civilians. The Secretary‑General reiterates his call on Member States to find ways to address disputes in a peaceful manner.

Civilians need to be protected wherever they are, whether it’s in… whether it’s in Gaza, whether it’s in Jammu and Kashmir, or whether it’s in Yemen. It’s a basic…

Question: Yeah.

Spokesman: …it’s a basic principle of this organization.

Question: Is he calling for an investigation also in the Indian‑occupied Kashmir?

Spokesman: Any loss of civilians needs to be investigated wherever they occur. (With PTI Inputs)

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