Kashmiri-Canadians worry as tensions mount between India and Pakistan – National


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Indian- and Pakistani-origin Canadians are retaining an in depth eye on tensions on the Indian subcontinent, the place a quickly escalating battle over the disputed area of Kashmir has raised fears over a warfare between nuclear-armed India and Pakistan.

The stress traces again to a suicide bombing that killed 40 paramilitary police in Indian-controlled Kashmir on Feb. 14. India blamed Pakistan for harbouring the phobia group answerable for the bombing and launched an air strike into Pakistani territory on Tuesday.

The 2 sides shot down each other’s plane on Wednesday, and pictures have been fired on either side of the disputed area.

READ MORE: World powers urge ‘de-escalation’ of tensions between India and Pakistan

For a lot of Kashmiri immigrants, the battle raises contemporary concern over the security of family members again house and stirs up outdated reminiscences of previous wars.

“Everyone seems to be anxious with respect to the continued hostility and the strain that has escalated within the final two, three days,” mentioned Mumtaz Khan, a member of the Kashmiri Canadian Cultural Affiliation who hails from the Pakistani facet of Kashmir.

Kashmiris from the Indian facet of the scenic area expressed related considerations.

“Each the international locations are nuclear[-armed] and it could actually result in a full-fledged warfare, whereby lots of people are going to lose lives,” mentioned Utpal Aima of the Kashmiri Abroad Affiliation of Canada

WATCH: India and Pakistan on the point of all-out army battle

Statistics Canada knowledge exhibits that greater than 1.9 million individuals in Canada take into account themselves to be of South Asian ethnic origin.

That quantity consists of 1.four million individuals of East Indian origin, 216,000 from Pakistan, 118,000 from the border-straddling area of Punjab and three,115 from Kashmir. The information is self-reported, and people are allowed to report a number of ethnicities.

Flights to India and Pakistan cancelled, rerouted amid rising tensions

India has the most important diaspora inhabitants on this planet, with roughly 17 million worldwide migrants dwelling outdoors the nation, in keeping with United Nations knowledge from 2017. An estimated six million individuals from Pakistan have additionally settled overseas. These numbers don’t embrace individuals of Indian or Pakistani ethnicity who have been born overseas.

A number of airways, together with Air Canada, responded to the violence on Wednesday by suspending flights into India and Pakistan.

WATCH: Pakistanis have fun downing of Indian air drive planes

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau mentioned Canadian officers have been paying “shut consideration” to the India-Pakistan tensions.

“It is a battle that has potential ramifications for billions of individuals within the area, and that’s why we’re calling for dialogue, for de-escalation,” Trudeau mentioned.

“I can guarantee you that [Foreign Affairs] Minister Chrystia Freeland is engaged along with her counterparts around the globe to try to transfer ahead on a peaceable scenario within the tensions within the area.”

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