Feb 25, 2020 - World

India gives Trump warm welcome as brutal protests rip New Delhi apart

People supporting India's new citizenship law beat a Muslim man in New Delhi, India. Photo: Danish Siddiqui/TPX/Reuters

While President Trump enjoys a hero's welcome in India, that nation's capital is being torn apart by violent protests between Hindus and Muslims.

The state of play: At least 186 people — 56 police officers and 130 protesters — have been injured and 10 killed in recent clashes, a New Delhi police spokesperson told the AP.

The big picture: Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi's Hindu nationalist party passed a law in December that bars Muslim refugees from citizenship.

  • His government has repeatedly blocked internet access in parts of the country that are home to protests.
  • Last year, Modi's government suspended the special status of Jammu and Kashmir, which is India's only Muslim-majority state.

In one New Delhi neighborhood, "Muslim residents, many of them women ... began to block a major road" during weekend protests against the law, the N.Y. Times reports.

  • "The next day ... a local leader from Mr. Modi’s political party ... threatened to mobilize a mob to clear out the protesters."
  • "He said he didn’t want to create trouble while Mr. Trump was visiting but warned the police that as soon as Mr. Trump left India ... his followers would clear the streets if the police didn’t.

Between the lines: Trump is seen as a hero by the same Hindu nationalist groups that supported Modi’s rise to power, Axios' Rashaan Ayesh emails.

  • Both leaders have targeted Muslim communities through the power of policy — Modi with the citizenship ban and Trump through his Muslim ban
  • These Hindu groups find Trump’s politics “comforting” because of how bluntly Trump is willing to confront Muslim communities about terrorism, the New York Times writes.

Go deeper: Timeline: The India-Pakistan conflict over Kashmir

Go deeper

Deadly Delhi clashes: What you need to know

Supporters of a new citizenship law throw stones at the burning houses and shops of those who oppose the law during clashes in Delhi, India. Photo: Yawar Nazir/ Getty Images

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal called for the Indian Army to be called in on Wednesday as the capital's worst religious violence in decades entered a third day.

What's happening: The BBC reports at least 20 people have been killed and 189 others wounded since Sunday in the clashes between Hindu and Muslim groups over a new citizenship law.

Go deeperArrowFeb 26, 2020 - World

Deadly clashes erupt in Delhi as Trump visits India

Rival protesters over the Citizenship Amendment Act in Delhi, India, on Monday. Photo: Yawar Nazir/ Getty Images

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal called for calm Tuesday as deadly clashes erupted in the city's northeast between supporters and opponents of India's controversial new citizenship law.

Why it matters: Per the BBC, a police officer and six civilians "died in the capital's deadliest day" since last year's passing of the Citizenship Amendment Act — which allows religious minorities but excludes Muslims from nearby countries to become citizens if they can show they were persecuted for their religion. This comes as President Trump and members of the U.S. first family are in Delhi as part of a two-day visit to India, though they're away from the violence.

Go deeper: India's citizenship bill continues Modi's Hindu nationalist offensive

Keep ReadingArrowFeb 25, 2020 - World

Timeline: The India-Pakistan conflict over Kashmir

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

The deadly protests during President Trump's visit to India between Muslims and Hindus over a new citizenship law, which critics say is anti-Muslim, are the latest clashes between adherents of the two religions.

The big picture: Predominantly Hindu India officially removed special privileges in August for its only Muslim-majority state, Jammu and Kashmir region, exacerbating tensions with Pakistan.

TimelineArrowFeb 25, 2020 - World