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Pakistan observes Black Day as India celebrates independence

Reuters
Filed on August 15, 2019
Kashmir, Pakistan, Pakistan observes Black Day
Pakistan's flag flies at half-mast to observe Black Day over India's decision to revoke the special status of Kashmir. Reuters

Politicians, including PM Imran Khan, replaced their social media pictures with black squares.


Pakistan observed a 'Black Day' on Thursday to coincide with India's Independence Day celebrations, in protest at New Delhi's decision to revoke special status for Kashmir.

India's decision this month, along with a communications blackout and curbs on the movement of those in Kashmir, caused fury in Pakistan, which cut trade and transport links and expelled India's envoy in retaliation.

Newspapers in Pakistan printed editions with black borders on Thursday and politicians, including Prime Minister Imran Khan, replaced their social media pictures with black squares.

Protests are due to be held across the country, including Azad Kashmir, the wedge of territory in the west of the region that Pakistan controls.

The largely symbolic move comes amid growing frustration in Islamabad at the lack of international response over the Kashmir dispute.

Pakistan was isolated diplomatically and faced "a world in denial" over the situation in Kashmir, Dawn, the country's most influential English language newspaper, said in an editorial.

The 15-member United Nations Security Council could discuss the dispute as soon as Thursday, but Pakistan says it only has guaranteed support from China.

In his Independence Day speech in the Indian capital, Prime Minister Narendra Modi highlighted the decision to remove the special rights of the region among the bold moves of his second term, following an election victory in May.

"Today every Indian can proudly say 'One Nation, One Constitution'," Modi, speaking from the ramparts of the historic Red Fort, said of the decision.

 





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