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    People hold a banner during a protest after the government scrapped the special status for Kashmir, in Kolkata, India, August 5, 2019

    Pakistan to Review Steps Against India If Jammu and Kashmir Status Restored - Ambassador

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    MOSCOW, August 10 (Sputnik) - Pakistan will reconsider its latest measures against India if the latter reverses its decision to revoke a special status of Jammu and Kashmir, Pakistan's Ambassador to Russia Qazi Khalilullah told Sputnik in an interview.

    Earlier this week, the Indian government announced its decision to strip Jammu and Kashmir of its special status and split it into two union territories, prompting an outraged reaction from Islamabad. Pakistan has downgraded its diplomatic relations and suspended trade with its neighbor.

    "We would be willing to review our decision in case India reverses its decision to annex Jammu and Kashmir … Jammu and Kashmir was already occupied by India. Now they have taken certain measures that amount to annexation," Khalilullah said.

    Pakistan is hoping to get the UN Security Council to urge India to act responsibly in the light of New Delhi’s decision on Jammu and Kashmir, the Pakistani diplomat explained.

    "We hope that the members of the UN Security Council would counsel India to act responsibly and to work to resolve the issue of the dispute of Jammu and Kashmir peacefully through diplomatic means," Khalilullah said.

    The diplomat reiterated that UN Security Council resolutions stipulate that neither India nor Pakistan could take any unilateral action to change status quo in Kashmir and therefore the revocation of Jammu and Kashmir’s special status was not seen by Pakistan as internal matter.

    Pakistan's Permanent Representative to the United Nations Maleeha Lodhi met with President of UN Security Council Joanna Wronecka on Wednesday to discuss regional security implications of India’s decision on Jammu and Kashmir.

    India and Pakistan have contended for the Kashmir region, the southern part of which lies in India's Jammu and Kashmir state, since the end of British rule in 1947. Despite a ceasefire being reached in 2003 following several armed conflicts, instability has continued, leading to the emergence of various extremist groups. Tensions spiked earlier this year when the Indian military conducted airstrikes in the region in response to an attack orchestrated by a terrorist group based on the Pakistani side of Kashmir.

    Tags:
    diplomatic ties, disputed territories, Jammu and Kashmir, Pakistan, India
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