G20 summit India hosts tourism meet in Kashmir amid tight security
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G20 summit India hosts tourism meet in Kashmir amid tight security. It is being held in Srinagar where the working group is meeting.

From Monday through Wednesday, the working group will meet in Srinagar, the summer capital of the federally administered territory.

Despite India’s special status being revoked in 2019, this is the biggest international event in the region since that time.

A total of 60 delegates from member countries of the G20 are expected to attend the conference.

Despite its firm opposition, China has not confirmed its attendance, citing its “strong opposition to any G20 meeting in disputed territory”. China’s statement has prompted the BBC to email India’s foreign ministry for its response.

Pakistan and India both claim Kashmir as their own, but control only parts of it. In the past two decades, the two nuclear-armed neighbors have fought two wars and have been involved in a limited conflict over the region.

Earlier this year, Pakistan had criticised India’s decision to hold the G20 meetings in Kashmir, calling it “irresponsible”.

However, India said it was “natural” to have G20 events and meetings in “Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh, which are integral and inalienable parts of the country.”

A federal government led by the Bharatiya Janata Party carved out two federally administered states from the Muslim-majority state of Jammu and Kashmir in 2019. Located along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) between India and China, Ladakh is a disputed region.

Several security drills were conducted in Kashmir in the days leading up to the event. Since 1989, there has been an armed insurgency against India – India accuses Pakistan of fomenting the unrest by backing separatist militants; Islamabad denies the charge.

Over the decades, opposition politicians, activists and locals have also accused successive Indian governments of human rights violations and stifling of freedoms in the restive region – which Delhi has denied.