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Sun Sep 22, 2019, 11:22 AM

Bernie Sanders: As Trump meets with India's Modi, a reminder to put human rights at center of U.S...

By Bernie Sanders Sep. 22, 2019


When President Trump meets with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Houston, we will hear much about the friendship between the American and Indian peoples. However, there will be a deafening silence when it comes to a human rights crisis unfolding right before our eyes — and that is unacceptable.

The Modi-Trump rally is happening at a moment when the state of Kashmir remains under lockdown. In early August, Modi’s government unilaterally revoked Kashmir’s longstanding autonomy, has cracked down on dissent, jailed political leaders and instituted a communications blackout.

The lockdown has also blocked Kashmiris’ access to basic medical care. In a letter in the British Medical Journal on Aug. 16, a group of doctors from across India asked their government to ease restrictions on communication and travel, saying they were “a blatant denial of the right to health care and the right to life” because they made it difficult for patients and staff to get to hospitals. A recent Human Rights Watch report notes that, “From chemotherapy to dialysis, patients are struggling to access lifesaving treatment on time.”

President Trump has voiced no criticism of these troubling moves. He should be demanding that these restrictions be lifted and communications be restored immediately.


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