As unrest that has spanned more than a month refuses to die down in India's Kashmir, Pakistan's Nobel laureate Malala Yousafzai on Tuesday called on the United Nations, Pakistan and India to improve the conditions in the state and halt the "inhumanity and heartbreak".
“The Kashmiri people, like people elsewhere, should have the fundamental human rights,” Pakistan daily Dawn quoted the 19-year-old as saying.
Malala expressed solidarity with the people of Kashmir and said that dozens have been killed and thousands wounded in the violent clashes between the unarmed protesters and the police over the last two months.
The violence flared up after Burhan Wani, commander of separatist organisation Hizbul Mujahideen fighting for Kashmir's independence, was killed. Curfew was imposed in the Indian side of Kashmir following his death.
"I stand with the people of Kashmir. My 14 million Kashmiri sisters and brothers have always been close to my heart," she said.
On the same day, the Pakistani army chief General Raheel Sharif described Kashmir as Pakistan's jugular vein and said that Islamabad will continue to support the sacrifices of Kashmiri people, PTI reported.
"We salute the great sacrifices of the people of Kashmir for their right of self-determination. The solution of the problem lies in the implementation of the resolutions of United Nations in this regard. Pakistan will continue to support Kashmir on the diplomatic and ethical fronts," said the chief of army staff, addressing a ceremony held at General Headquarters in Rawalpindi to mark the country's Defence Day.
An all-party delegation seeking to end the two-month long turbulence in Kashmir concluded yesterday, with the Indian home minister Rajnath Singh sending out a clear message to the separatists of Kashmir 'being an integral part of India always'.