Pakistani PM Khan compares world’s silence on Kashmir crisis to ‘appeasing Hitler’

The strained relations between bitter rivals India and Pakistan flared up earlier this week after India revoked the self-governing status of the Muslim-majority Jammu and Kashmir state (J&K), the part of disputed Kashmir that India has been controlling since the late 1940s. The ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi insists this measure will improve the security and economic development of the region. 

India’s move prompted widespread outrage in Pakistan, which considers the whole of Kashmir its territory. The Pakistani government severed all trade ties with India and is now gearing up to seek support in the UN Security Council. 

In a Sunday tweet, Pakistani PM Khan compared the renewed tensions around Kashmir with the explosive pre-WWII situation in Europe.

“Question is: Will the world watch & appease as they did Hitler at Munich?” he asked, alluding to the infamous ‘appeasement’ policy pursued by the leading European nations 80 years ago, that allowed Nazi Germany to annex large chunks of Czechoslovakia without serious repercussions.

Fearing outbreaks of violence, India imposed a curfew in some parts of J&K that includes  travel restrictions and a ban on rallies, and boosted police presence. There were reports of security forces breaking up street protests in the state’s summer capital of Srinagar on Friday, which India dismissed as “fabricated and incorrect.”

Khan condemned the curfew and “crackdown” in Kashmir, accusing New Delhi of “impending genocide” and harboring plans of “to change the demography of Kashmir through ethnic cleansing.”

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BJP officials have been arguing that ending the autonomy will allow it to fully integrate Kashmir into India, and the step will be beneficial to the residents of Kashmir. The government also insists that the measure will help in combating local insurgent groups that India accuses Pakistan of supporting. After revoking the self-governing status, “terrorism in Kashmir will end and [the region] will progress on the path of development,” Home Minister Amit Shah said on Sunday. A similar point was made by Modi, who promised that the region “will see more and more development.”

The J&K is set be split into two parts: the ‘new’ Jammu and Kashmir, and the separate region of Ladakh. The change will come into effect on October 31.

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