Press Trust of india

UN chief 'very saddened' by casualties in Delhi violence

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United Nations, Feb 27:  UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres is "very saddened" by the casualties in the communal clashes in northeast Delhi over the amended citizenship law and calls for maximum restraint for violence to be avoided, his spokesperson said.

Communal violence over the Citizenship (Amendment) Act in northeast Delhi killed at least 39 people and left over 200 injured till Thursday as police struggled to check the rioters who ran amok on streets, burning and looting shops, pelting stones and thrashing people.

Guterres' spokesman Stephane Dujarric during a daily briefing here on Wednesday said, "He's very saddened by the reports of casualties following the protests in Delhi, and as he has done in similar circumstances, he calls for maximum restraint and for violence to be avoided."

Dujarric was responding to a question on whether the Secretary General has any comment on the riots in parts of New Delhi over the new citizenship law and if he has communicated with the Indian Government.

Earlier Dujarric had said that Guterres is closely following the situation in New Delhi and stressed that demonstrators should be allowed to demonstrate peacefully and security forces should show restraint.

Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson Raveesh Kumar on Thursday said law enforcement agencies are working on the ground to prevent violence and ensure restoration of confidence and normalcy.

"Senior representatives of the government have been involved in that process. The prime minister has publicly appealed for peace and brotherhood. We would urge that irresponsible comments are not made at this sensitive time," Kumar said.

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