India PM calls emergency meeting as Kashmir death toll rises

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Narendra Modi is said to have expressed his "unhappiness" over the media coverage on violent protests in Kashmir Valley following killing of Burhan Wani saying the Hizbul Mujahideen militant has been portrayed as a "hero". They were killed during clashes with security forces, mostly in Anantnag, Shopian, Kulgam and Pulwama districts.

Pakistan Prime Minister, Nawaz Sharif, condemned the civilian killings while describing Wani, 22, a commander of the Hizbul Mujahideen group, as a "Kashmiri leader".

He further said Pakistan is hopeful that Indian government will show seriousness and start the meaningful dialogue in order to resolve all the outstanding issues including Kashmir. Minister of state for home Kiren Rijiju said Pakistan "should worry about human rights violations in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir" since Kashmir is an "internal matter of India".

A curfew in the region first issued Saturday remains in place, S.J.M. Geelani, Kashmir Zone police chief, told CNN.

At least 300 injured civilians, a lot of them wounded by bullets and pellets, have been admitted to Sri Maharaja Hari Singh Hospital, in the region's main city of Srinagar.

More deaths were reported on Monday after a weekend of violence left 23 dead, including a policeman.

"We won't deprive of sacrifices to reach Burhan Wani's mission to its logical conclusion", he said.

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Four days of clashes between anti-India protesters and government troops have overwhelmed hospitals in India's portion of Kashmir, where doctors and other staff were exhausted from treating hundreds of patients.

The BBC's South Asia correspondent, Justin Rowlatt, says this is the worst violence in the region for some years and the fear is that if it is not brought under control soon, many more people could be killed and injured.

Kirby said the USA government was concerned about the growing violence in the region, which has been widely reported by the U.S. media.

The security forces have been under attack after Wani was killed in an encounter.

The Himalayan region is divided between Pakistan and India, but both claim the entire area and have fought two wars over it since 1947.

The separatist groups on Monday extended the strike call till July 13 to coincide with the 85th anniversary of those who laid down their lives fighting the Aristocratic rule in the State in 1931.

(Copyright © 2015. All Rights Reserved.)
 
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