India

Kashmir newspapers 'ban' lifted

Kashmiri media persons hold placard during a stage a sit-in protest at Press Enclave in Srinagar summer capital of Indian Kashmir, 16 July 2016. Image copyright EPA
Image caption Kashmir editors have protested against the suspension of their publications

Authorities in Indian-administered Kashmir have lifted a ban on publication of newspapers.

The three-day ban was imposed after violent protests sparked by the killing of a prominent separatist militant.

But the publishers have delayed print runs, saying the government should guarantee freedom of operation.

More than 40 people have been killed and nearly 2,000 people and 1,600 security forces have been injured in clashes since 9 July.

Last week, the Kashmir government asked newspapers to stop publication for a few days, saying that the ban was a "temporary measure to address an extraordinary situation".

However, the government's political adviser, Amitabh Mattoo, said the decision was made without the knowledge of the state's Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti.

"Sometimes decisions taken at a local level are not something the highest authority approves of. There was some miscommunication,'' he told the NDTV news channel.

But newspaper editors in Kashmir said they would resume publishing if the government assured freedom of operation.

"The government must own the ban and issue a statement guaranteeing that media operations are not being hampered from the movement of staff, to news gathering, printing and the distribution of the newspapers," Masood Hussain, editor of the English weekly Kashmir Life told the Associated Press news agency.

The ongoing crisis in Kashmir was sparked by the killing of a prominent separatist militant, Burhan Wani.

A curfew remains in place - along with curbs on mobile and internet access.

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