Kashmir: Pakistan's Khan vows to 'fight until the end'

Kashmir: Pakistan's Khan vows to 'fight until the end'

During a visit to Kashmir, Prime Minister Imran Khan accused India's military of "planning" action in regions controlled by Pakistan. Khan said Pakistan was "fully prepared to respond."

Amid the latest crisis between Pakistan and India, Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan accused India of preparing a military move in the disputed region of Kashmir. 

Khan claimed the move would target Azad Kashmir, which is in the Pakistan-controlled area of the disputed region. 

The Pakistani leader visited Muzaffarabad in Azad Kashmir on Wednesday to mark Pakistan's independence day. In a televised speech from Kashmir, he said Pakistani military was "fully prepared to respond" to any Indian aggression.

"We have decided that if India commits any type of violation we will fight till the end," Khan said.

No more special status

Khan earlier on Wednesday pledged to support the struggle for self-determination in Indian-controlled Kashmir.

"Independence Day is an opportunity for great happiness, but today we are saddened by the plight of our Kashmiri brothers in occupied Jammu and Kashmir who are victims of Indian oppression," Khan said in a statement ahead of the trip.

"I assure my Kashmiri brothers that we stand with them," he said.

Khan's visit comes a day after Islamabad called for an urgent meeting of the UN Security Council to discuss India's "illegal actions."

India, Pakistan, and China all control parts of Kashmir, which is mostly populated by Muslims. Diplomatic ties between New Delhi and Islamabad soured when the Indian government unexpectedly revoked the special status for the state of Jammu and Kashmir. The move, which has been pushed by Hindu nationalists, strips the disputed state of rights to make its own laws and allows non-residents to buy property.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi has claimed the move was to boost Kashmir's economic development and help "free Jammu and Kashmir from terrorism and separatism."

India blocks Internet in Kashmir

India also detained a number of state leaders and had troops deploy barricades and razor wire on roads to prevent protests. Internet and phone services were also suspended, prompting residents to communicate with notes and human couriers.

Pakistan responded by expelling India's ambassador from Islamabad, suspending trade relations with India and launching a diplomatic offensive against New Delhi. 

Khan's Wednesday visit serves as another show of solidarity with the Muslim-majority region. The Pakistani prime minister is set to give a speech in the state assembly where he is expected to denounce India's alleged human rights violations.

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