J&K Peace Forum, an organisation of Kashmiri Pandits, on Friday condemned the targetted killings of people in the union territory and said that to ensure durable peace and reconciliation, it is vital to address the underlying issues and causes of violence.
“We, JK Peace forum denounce in the strongest terms the heinous attacks that show a ruthless disregard for human rights and the rule of law. The senseless killings of people, who have a fundamental right to be safe and protected from violence, is unacceptable under any circumstance.” it said in a statement.
It said that the perpetrators of the crime have undermined the ongoing peace and reconciliation efforts. The engagement that J&K Peace Forum has had with inter communities has shown that the vast majority of people want to end the destructive pattern of attacks.
The alleged scale and gravity of these attacks mark a worrying escalation of violence. No cause can justify such brutality and senseless killings. Perpetrators should be held to account.
“I urge the security forces to exercise restraint in dealing with the situation and above all ensure that innocent civilians are not harmed. I strongly urge all communities and groups to reject violence. After years of insecurity and instability, it should be clear that violence is not the solution to the challenges facing Jammu and Kashmir,” J&K Peace Forum chairman Satish Mahaldar said.
It is crucial that the national and local authorities support the community leaders and work to bring the perpetrators of all attacks to account, he stated.
Expressing concern over the grave violation of human rights, the forum said: “We call up on law enforcement authorities to ensure prompt and effective investigations are undertaken and these and all perpetrators of such crimes are brought to justice, and to also ensure protection for those who are vulnerable to further attacks.”
Vicious attacks mark a low point on an ongoing fragile peace and reconciliation process facilitated by local stakeholders, it added.