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18 May 2024

Truck driver killed in Kashmir ahead of Modi-Trump talks

Photo: AFP


Stone-throwing protesters killed a truck driver in Indian Kashmir, police said Monday, as a crippling security lockdown entered its fourth week in the restive territory.

The fatality came ahead of talks between Narendra Modi and Donald Trump at the G7 in France when the US president will reportedly press the Indian premier to lift a communications blackout and show "utmost restraint".

On August 5 Modi's government revoked the autonomy of the region where tens of thousands of people have been killed in an uprising against Indian rule since 1989, most of them civilians.

Ahead of the announcement New Delhi sent reinforcements to the estimated half a million troops already stationed in Kashmir, cut phone lines and the internet, placed severe restrictions on movement and arrested thousands, according to multiple sources.

The turning of the former Himalayan kingdom of seven million people into a fortress of barricades and barbed wire has not prevented protests and clashes with security forces taking place however.

In the latest demonstration on Sunday in Anantnag district protestors hurled stones at a truck that they believed to be a military vehicle. The 42-year-old driver was struck on the head and died, police said.

The Press Trust of India news agency said two men had been arrested over the incident.