Washington    -   Powerful Democratic Senator Mark Warner, who is co-chair of the US Senate India Caucus, on Tuesday said that he is “disturbed by restrictions on communications and movement of people in Jammu and Kashmir and asked the government to live up to democratic principles by allowing freedom of press, information and political participation.

“While I understand India has legitimate security concerns, I am disturbed by its restrictions on communications and movement within Jammu and Kashmir,” Senator Warner tweeted.

“I hope India will live up to its democratic principles by allowing freedom of press, information, and political participation,” said the top Democratic Senator from Virginia, who has joined his other Senate colleagues from the Democratic party in calling India to lift restrictions.

The statement by Warner, who is also currently a Vice Chair of the Senate Democratic Caucus and the Vice Chair of the Senate Intelligence Committee, is significant because he has been one of the best friends of India inside and outside the Senate.

For past several years, he has been Co-Chair of the influential Senate India Caucus which is the only country-specific caucus in the United States Senate. Warner has been co-author of several important India-centric legislations in the Senate.

Mahathir urges peaceful resolution of Kashmir

Malaysian Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohammad, while stressing the need for solving the Kashmir dispute on Tuesday, said that he had also raised the issue in his discussions with fascist Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi when they both had met in Vladivostok in Russia.

According to Kashmir Media Service, while talking to reporters at the Parliament House’s lobby in Kuala Lumpur, Dr Mahathir said, “We don’t want to see any violence in Kashmir, and that any dispute between the two countries should be solved amicably.”

“We must know how to overcome this problem (Jammu and Kashmir conflict). When we make remarks, we are not specifically targeting anyone, but we only want both parties to negotiate and do not resort to violence,” he told reporters.

Dr Mahathir said it was Malaysia’s policy not to resort to violence, but to resolve issues through negotiations and arbitration.

The Jammu and Kashmir issue arose when Turkey and China both had raised it at the United Nations General Assembly’s (UNGA) 74th session in New York on September 27, leading to Dr Mahathir supporting the two countries.

Dr Mahathir had said, “Now, despite a UN resolution on Jammu and Kashmir, the country has been invaded and occupied.

There may be reasons for this action, but it is still wrong. The problem must be solved by peaceful means. India should work with Pakistan to resolve this problem. Ignoring the UN would lead to other forms of disregard for the UN and the rule of law.”

Mahathir words, “The country has been invaded and occupied” prompted extremist Hindu elements to call for a boycott of Malaysia.

When asked whether the boycott issue would impact trade between Malaysia and India, Mahathir had said: “I don’t think so.”