The ongoing visit of the European diplomats to Jammu and Kashmir has gained 'more significance' because of the international focus on the Kashmir issue and the upcoming assembly election in the state, the leader of the five-member team, Michael Stenberg, said on Thursday.
"This time, the visit is of much more importance in view of the international focus on Kashmir and the coming election," he said.
Stenberg made his comments before beginning a closed-door meeting with Jammu and Kashmir Democratic Freedom Party chief Shabir Shah and his colleagues in Srinagar on Thursday morning.
He said the visit of the European Union is a 'customary' one to assess the 'latest situation in Kashmir valley'.
"Every year, we are meeting Kashmiri people to know about the human rights situation and discuss other relevant issues with them," Stenberg added.
He did not spell out 'other relevant issues' they will discuss with the Kashmiri leaders.
Shah and his two close associates, Mohammad Saleem Geelani and Mohammad Abdullah Tari, welcomed the European delegation at Shah's residence at Rawalpora-Sanatnagar.
Besides Stenberg, who hails from Denmark, the other members of the delegation are Estatos Lozos (Greece), Michel Caillite (France), Itala Occhi (Italy) and Signi Ropika (Denmark).
The delegation had separate meetings with Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Farooq Abdullah, leaders of the Hurriyat Conference and CPI-M leader M Y Tarigami during the past two days.
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