SRINAGAR, India (AP) — Separatists in Indian-controlled Kashmir have called a strike that shuttered shops across the region to protest the life sentences handed out by an Indian court to two pro-independence Kashmiri activists.
The activists were convicted last week in the killing of a paramilitary officer in 1990.
Nearly 100 members of the pro-independence separatist group Jammu-Kashmir Liberation Front held a daylong hunger strike Monday in the main city, Srinagar, to protest the verdict.
The group's leader Yasin Malik called the verdict India's "political vendetta" and said such measures would force another armed rebellion in the disputed region.
About 68,000 people have been killed since 1989 in an armed rebellion against Indian rule and in an ensuing Indian crackdown that has largely crushed the militants.