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Jakarta Post

Drums of war in Kashmir

  • Shahid Javed Burki

    -

Jakarta   /   Fri, March 8, 2019   /  04:07 pm
Drums of war in Kashmir From air to ashes: Indian soldiers and Kashmiri onlookers stand near the remains of an Indian Air Force helicopter after it crashed in Budgam district, outside Srinagar. Officials said an investigation was underway into the cause of the crash, which came as Pakistan claimed to have shot down two Indian fighter jets in the divided and disputed Kashmir region. (AFP/Tauseef Mustafa)

Tensions between India and Pakistan are at their highest level in decades, and many fear the nuclear-armed neighbors are on the brink of yet another war over the disputed Kashmir region. But the latest eruption is different from its predecessors. The two countries’ struggle over Kashmir began in 1947. After Pakistan supported a Muslim insurgency in the princely state of Jammu and Kashmir, the state’s Hindu ruler, Maharaja Hari Singh, decided to cede the territory to India in exchange for armed assistance. Since the state’s population was predominantly Muslim, however, Pakistan cried foul and sent in troops, which India countered with more troops of its own. The war resulted in a stalemate, with the United Nations helping to secure a cease-fire in 1949. As part of the deal, the state was divided between India and Pakistan — and remains so to this day. The ...

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