United Jihad Council denounces US sanctions against Syed Salahuddin, says struggle for Kashmir will continue

Srinagar: The United Jihad Council (UJC), which is based in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK), on Tuesday, dubbed as a "crude joke" the US decision to designate its head and Hizbul Mujahideen chief Syed Salahuddin as a "global terrorist".

A day after the US State Department announced the decision, the UJC said its "struggle" for "freedom" of Kashmir "will continue till it reaches its logical conclusion."

File image of Syed Salahuddin. News18

File image of Syed Salahuddin. News18

The UJC, a conglomerate of about 13 militant groups active in Jammu and Kashmir, was formed by the Pakistan Army in 1994 and Salahuddin is its head. It includes Lashkar-e-Taiba and Jaish-e-Mohammad outfits.

Salahuddin, whose original name is Mohammad Yusuf Shah, hails from Kashmir and is based in Pakistan for the last 28 years.

"Salahuddin is a symbol of the freedom struggle of Kashmir. The Trump administration's decision to declare him a global terrorist is a crude joke with the Charter of United Nations, ground realities and very regrettable," said Syed Sadaqat Hussain, spokesperson of UJC, in a statement in Srinagar.

The US State Department, in a notification just before prime minister Narendra Modi's first meeting with President Donald Trump on Monday, announced the decision to designate Salahuddin as a "global terrorist", saying he "has committed, or poses a significant risk of committing, acts of terrorism."

The US took the step against the militant group's 71-year-old head as he had "vowed to block any peaceful resolution to the Kashmir conflict, threatened to train more Kashmiri suicide bombers, and vowed to turn the Kashmir Valley into a graveyard for Indian forces".

Hussain said the US decision is aimed at making Modi happy.

The UJC spokesperson claimed that the "freedom struggle of Kashmir has reached such a stage where nobody can either stop it or weaken it."

Updated Date: Jun 27, 2017 20:12 PM

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