A day after the United States of America declared Hizbul Mujahideen a specially designated terrorist organisation being led by an internationally recognised terrorist, Pakistan’s foreign office has called the development saddening.
A report in Dawn states FO spokesperson Nafees Zakaria as saying that Kashmiris’ struggle for their right to self-determination has been rightfully continuing for the past 70 years.
“Indian occupation forces had used excessive force against people in India-held Kashmir and they are “continuing to do so”. The US has always appreciated Pakistan’s sacrifices in counter-terrorism efforts,” the spokesman said.
He further said that the primary issue in Pakistan-India relations is that of Kashmir “which has to be resolved through dialogue”.
The US State Department has declared the Hizbul Mujahideen as a “Specially Designated Global Terrorist” (SDGT) organisation. This comes as a major blow to Hiazbul after Yaseen Ittoo, one of its commanders, was killed in an encounter.
“The Department of State has designated Hizbul Mujahideen—also known as Hizb-ul-Mujahideen, also known as HM—as a Foreign Terrorist Organisation under section 219 of the Immigration and Nationality Act, and as a Specially Designated Global Terrorist (SDGT) under section 1(b) of Executive Order (E.O.) 13224,” a US State Department press release read.
“These designations seek to deny HM the resources it needs to carry out terrorist attacks. Among other consequences, all of HM’s property and interests in property subject to U.S. jurisdiction are blocked, and U.S. persons are generally prohibited from engaging in any transactions with the group. Formed in 1989, HM is one of the largest and oldest militant groups operating in Kashmir. Hizbul Mujahideen is led by Specially Designated Global Terrorist Mohammad Yusuf Shah, also known as Syed Salahuddin. Hizbul Mujahideen has claimed responsibility for several attacks, including the April 2014, explosives attack in the state of Jammu and Kashmir, which injured 17 people.”