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Maldives, Sri Lanka, UAE Voice Support for India on Kashmir, Bangladesh 'Observing' Situation

© REUTERS / AMIT DAVEPeople celebrate after the government scrapped the special status of Kashmir, in Ahmedabad, India, August 5, 2019
People celebrate after the government scrapped the special status of Kashmir, in Ahmedabad, India, August 5, 2019 - Sputnik International
New Delhi (Sputnik): New Delhi's decision to strip Jammu and Kashmir of special status has found some open support among India's neighbours. The Maldives, Sri Lanka and the UAE have all stated that they feel the decision is India's internal affair.

The Maldivian government said on Wednesday that: "It is an internal matter. We believe it's the right of every sovereign nation to amend their laws as required.

India on Monday 5 August amended Article 370 of the country’s Constitution through a Presidential decree, which later received Parliament’s nod to withdraw the special status granted to Jammu and Kashmir. New Delhi also brought in legislation to bifurcate the state into two federally administered territories – Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh.

Sri Lanka and the United Arab Emirates have also stated that it as an internal matter. Sri Lankan President Ranil Wickremesinghe said, “The creation of Ladakh and the consequential restructuring are India’s internal matters.”

The UAE envoy to India Dr Ahmad Al Banna said on Tuesday (Aug 06), "The reorganisation of states is not a unique incident in the history of independent India and that it was mainly aimed at reducing regional disparity and improving efficiency. It is an internal matter as stipulated by the Indian Constitution."

Bangladesh, on the other hand, said it is closely "observing the situation" emerging out of New Delhi's decision to change the status of Jammu and Kashmir. Obaidul Quader, General Secretary of the ruling Awami League and Road Transport and Bridges Minister said, his government is "unlikely to comment on its neighbour's internal issues."

United States Department Spokeswomen Morgan Ortagus said on Tuesday, "We are closely following the events in Jammu and Kashmir."

Pakistan and China criticised New Delhi's move to tinker with the status of Jammu and Kashmir. Addressing a joint session of Pakistan Parliament, Prime Minister Imran Khan warned India on Tuesday against aggravating the Kashmir crisis, saying further escalation of tensions in the contested region would leave no winners.

Kashmir has been a bone of contention between rivals India and Pakistan since they gained freedom from British rule in 1947. Both countries fought three wars, two over Kashmir. India and Pakistan also had an armed conflict in the Kargil region of Jammu and Kashmir in 1999.

Beijing said in a statement, India has continued to undermine China's territorial sovereignty "by unilaterally changing its domestic law. Such a practice is unacceptable and will not come into force." New Delhi, however, rejected Chinese objections and said, it is an internal matter concerning the territory of India.

Indo-Sino relations have suffered a decline in recent years with tensions over the Demchok area of Ladakh, but tensions eased slightly after the Wuhan Informal summit between Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chinese President Xi Jinping in April 2018.

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