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Pakistan Rules Out Military Action Over India's Kashmir Move

Indian paramilitary soldiers patrol during curfew in Srinagar on August 7.
Indian paramilitary soldiers patrol during curfew in Srinagar on August 7.

Pakistan has ruled out a military response to India's move to strip the disputed region of Kashmir of its special status despite rising tensions between the two countries.

"We are looking at political, diplomatic, and legal options. As far as a military response is concerned, we are not looking at that. We are not," Pakistani Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi told a news conference on August 8 in Islamabad.

The Indian-administered portion of Muslim-majority Kashmir remains under an indefinite security lockdown after New Delhi moved to revoke its status from statehood to territory and sent thousands of troops into the restive Himalayan region. Cell phone and Internet services have also been mostly shut down in Kashmir, leaving it cut off from most of the world.

Kashmir is claimed in full by both India and Pakistan, and rebels have been for decades fighting Indian rule in the portion it administers.

Qureshi's remarks came as Islamabad announced the suspension of a key train service with India over the Kashmir issue. Federal Railways Minister Sheikh Rashid Ahmad said the so-called Friendship Express train service had been suspended from August 8.

The railway suspension announcement was made as passengers were waiting to board a train in the eastern Pakistani city of Lahore to travel to India.

Separately, the Pakistani government said it was banning the screening of Indian films in the country's cinemas.

"No Indian film will be screened in any Pakistani cinema. Drama, films, and Indian content of this kind will be completely banned in Pakistan," Firdous Ashiq Awan, an adviser to Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan, said in a tweet.

This is the second time this year that Pakistan has banned Bollywood movies from its cinemas.

Based on reporting by Reuters, AFP, AP, and dpa
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