Kashmir: Talibanising Kashmir

The Kashmir dispute has changed since September 11.

The World Today
6 minute READ

Alexander Evans

Director Cyber, Foreign and Commonwealth Office

As a result of the campaign against terrorism, militant groups fighting there will come under sharp pressure to cull their ranks of Bin Laden sympathisers and Arab and Afghan fighters. But just how Islamist is the insurgency? The Kashmir Valley is physically closer to Kabul than New Delhi but what impact will the Afghan war have on this dispute that goes back to the division of the subcontinent?

The insurgency in Indian-controlled Kashmir that began in 1988 is exclusively Muslim. Neither Hindus nor Sikhs from the state have joined a battle that pits, in the main, Muslims from the Kashmir Valley against Indian security forces. But while it is a Muslim revolt against Indian rule, it is not necessarily an Islamic one. The origins of militancy are open to dispute.

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