About us Where we help Kashmir Kashmir Emergency Appeal Al-Fatiha Global is able to deliver Humanitarian Aid inside Srinagar and other parts of Jammu & Kashmir, by working in partnership with a locally registered charity in Indian Administered Kashmir, which is run by those residing inside Srinagar, in the vale of Kashmir. The recent upsurge in the violence of July 2016 has seen a huge loss of life once again, thousands have been injured, and Kashmiri’s are severely in need of medical aid. Please donate to our Kashmiri Appeal. Situation in Kashmir In 2010, Yale literary Prize, winning Indian writer Pankaj Mishra, sums up the Situation in Kashmir, during his interview with British newspaper the Guardian. Once known for its extraordinary beauty, the valley of Kashmir now hosts the biggest, bloodiest and also the most obscure military occupation in the world. With more than 80,000 people dead in an anti-India insurgency backed by Pakistan, the killings fields of Kashmir dwarf those of Palestine and Tibet. In addition to the everyday regime of arbitrary arrests, curfews, raids, and checkpoints enforced by nearly 700,000 Indian soldiers, the valley's 4 million Muslims are exposed to extra-judicial execution, rape and torture, with such barbaric variations as live electric wires inserted into [censored]. https://www.theguardian.com/theguardian/2010/aug/14/silence-over-kashmir-conflict Kashmir’s have been called the Palestinians of the Indian Sub-continent; their suffering has given rise to a vocabulary that does not exist elsewhere. Dead Eyes The term is given to hundreds of Kashmiri children blinded for life, after having been shot in the eyes with non-lethal pellet guns. https://www.nytimes.com/2016/08/29/world/asia/pellet-guns-used-in-kashmir-protests-cause-dead-eyes-epidemic.html?_r=0 Half Widows Numbering in the thousands is the term given widows, whose husbands are taken for interrogation by the security forces and have subsequently ‘disappeared’. These women are called "half-widows" because they have no idea whether their husbands are dead or alive. http://indianexpress.com/article/india/india-others/the-other-half/ Gendered Violence The army and police have been accused of rape, sometimes to force compliance. The Kunan Poshspora incident is just one high profile example: in 1991, an estimated 40 women from two Kashmir villages were gang raped by members of the Indian army in just one night. http://www.milligazette.com/news/7188-1336-rape-cases-in-kashmir-in-seven-years-conviction-rate-woefully-low The Indian government has registered 1,336 cases of rape in Kashmir since 2006, but there have been few convictions. Official statistics on sexual violence are very conservative: 12% of interviewees who took part in a 2005 study by Médecins Sans Frontières reported that they had been victims of sexual violence since 1989. http://theconversation.com/the-forgotten-half-widows-of-kashmirs-armed-conflict-62708 Fake Encounters Fake encounters is the term given by Kashmiris, to the describe the practice luring civilians by promising them Jobs as "porters" for the army and shooting them in cold blood, to claim cash awards. Awards are given to soldiers for stopping infiltration by militants from Pakistan and since foreign militants have no local next of kin to return the body for burial, these bodies are buried in unmarked graves. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2010_Kashmir_unrest https://thewire.in/81287/army-told-disclose-pathribal-fake-encounter-details/ https://www.theguardian.com/world/2012/jul/09/mass-graves-of-kashmir TTT Transgenerational Transmission of Trauma, a term used to describe the transmission of trauma down the generations. Before 1989, there were no PTSD cases, but now we have an epidemic of disorders in Kashmir. Generation after generation has been at the receiving end; anybody could get killed or humiliated - [it's] a condition of helplessness. Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) recently released a comprehensive report [PDF] on mental health in Kashmir, it concluded that half of all residents of the valley have "mental health problems". The report found that nearly 1.8 million adults suffer from some form of mental distress. A majority - 93 percent - have experienced conflict-related trauma. The average adult was found to have witnessed around eight traumatic events (more than one in each decade) during his or her lifetime. More than 70 percent of adults have experienced or witnessed the sudden or violent death of someone they knew. http://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/features/2016/06/kashmir-mental-health-crisis-160620085520339.html SSMCMC State-Security-Military-Corporate-Media-Complex, is the term used to describe the relationship between the politicians, the security forces and the media, in ensuring a unified front is presented to the Indian people and the world. Sudhir Chaudhary, the editor of the Zee News channel, said in an interview to Al Jazeera: "We have an anti-terrorism stand, an anti-Pakistan stand. We believe Kashmir is a part and parcel of India." Justifying the gag on the Kashmiri press, he said: "Media in Srinagar is not fair, is not neutral. It is not portraying both the sides ... it was a right decision to put a brake on such media." During the 2016 unrest in Kashmir following the death of 21-year-old Burhan Wani, a "most-wanted" , insurgent commander, the Indian state enforced a complete information blackout. Mobile phone networks and internet services were interrupted. Printing presses shut down and newspapers in the region temporarily banned from publishing. Facebook was accused of censoring posts and pictur and blocking the user accounts of those posting about the events unfolding in Kashmir. http://www.aljazeera.com/programmes/listeningpost/2017/03/manufacturing-consent-indian-administered-kashmir-170301125234902.html AFSPA The “Armed Forces Special Powers Act” 1990 means “No officer can be charged without permission from the Indian Government”. Its; origins can be traced to "The Armed Forces Special Powers Ordinance of 1942", which was promulgated by the British on 15 August 1942 to suppress the Quit India Movement. United Nations ViewWhen India presented its second periodic report to the United Nations Human Rights Committee in 1991, members of the UNHRC asked numerous questions about the validity of the AFSPA. They questioned the constitutionality of the AFSPA under Indian law and asked how it could be justified in light of Article 4 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, ICCPR. On 23 March 2009, UN Commissioner for Human Rights Navanethem Pillay asked India to repeal the AFSPA. She termed the law as "dated and colonial-era law that breach contemporary international human rights standards." On 31 March 2012, the UN asked India to revoke AFSPA saying it had no place in Indian democracy. Christof Heyns, UN's Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions said "During my visit to Kashmir, AFSPA was described to me as 'hated' and 'draconian'. It clearly violates International Law. A number of UN treaty bodies have pronounced it to be in violation of International Law as well." http://www.ndtv.com/india-news/un-asks-india-to-repeal-armed-forces-special-powers-act-474228 A Wounded Paradise The natural beauty of Kashmir is unrivalled, with its' soaring mountains, gushing rivers and green meadows considered a utopia by those who visit. But for residents, Kashmir is a place of injustice, death and destruction. It is a wounded paradise where orphanages, military checkpoints and "martyrs'" graveyards disfigure the landscape.http://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/inpictures/2011/08/201181143630563904.html Operating In Kashmir For 20 Years Al Fatiha Global was originally set up in 1996 to benefit the needy in Pakistani Administered Kashmir. A few of our dedicated team of volunteers and trustees are from the region so know the area well and have a vested interest in benefitting the community and its inhabitants. An emergency response team was mobilised straight after the floods in September to assess and identify the need on the ground. In conjunction with local aid agencies permanently based in Kashmir, Al Fatiha Global was able to deliver an emergency response which included medical and vital food aid, mobile clinics, and teams to help with the disinfection clear up the process once the flood waters had receded. The sharp increase in refugees as a result of flood waters destroying so many family homes has meant that AFG will be working in the region for some time to come and will need YOUR generous donations along with our team on the ground to help the most vulnerable long term. A series of natural disasters such as the 2005 Kashmir earthquake and the September floods of 2014 have hugely exacerbated the humanitarian crisis. The unstable and sensitive nature of the region along with the geographical challenges of delivering aid has resulted in several dedicated aid agencies developing their services to alleviate some of that suffering. Kashmir has seen almost six decades of violence result in a humanitarian crisis often ignored by the international community. Several wars and continuous low-level conflicts over Kashmir between India and Pakistan have impacted tens of thousands of innocent civilians over that time- many live in temporary homes having been displaced several times due to the violence. An estimated 22,000 widows and 100,000 orphans have been reported as a result of violence in Jammu & Kashmir over the last several decades and the death of a breadwinner in many of these communities results in great hardship for those left behind. Please donate to our Kashmiri Appeal.