Salahuddin's Hizbul Mujahideen is the biggest militant fighting group Indian forces in Kashmir. Photograph: (Reuters)
Pakistan on Tuesday came out in defence of Hizbul Mujahideen chief Syed Salahuddin and said the US designation of him as a global terrorist was “unjustified”.
A statement issued by Pakistan’s foreign office said the “indigenous struggle of Kashmiris” in Jammu and Kashmir is “legitimate”.
"The 70-year-old indigenous struggle of Kashmiris in the Indian occupied Jammu and Kashmir remains legitimate.”
“The designation of individuals supporting the Kashmiri right to self-determination as terrorists is completely unjustified,” the statement said.
The US State Department on Monday designation Syed Salahuddin as a Specially Designated Global Terrorist, just before Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi visited the White House for his first talks with US President Donald Trump.
Pakistan also said it would continue to provide political, diplomatic and moral support to the Kashmiri people.
At the talks on Monday, Modi and Trump called on Pakistan to ensure that its territory is not used to launch terrorist attacks on other countries, the White House said in a statement.