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Following 9/11, the US needed Pakistani ·Musharraf found it impossible to maintain the distinction
bases and cooperation for its policies in between Al Qaeda in Afghanistan and the groups the ISI was
Afghanistan, whose Taliban government backing in Kashmir and had to promise to curb attacks by
was closely linked to Pakistan. these militants, banning the organisations in Jan 2002.
·Musharraf was prepared to side with the ·However, although their camps in Kashmir were closed, a
US in return for concessions (sanctions number were later re-opened (Musharraf had attracted
imposed after the nuclear tests were lifted, considerable opposition in Pakistan for his policies towards
debt was rescheduled and aid promised). Afghanistan, and didn't dare seem too `soft' on Kashmir).
·India, which had improved its relations · A spate of further cross border terrorist actions convinced
with the US, was furious at the sudden US the Indians that Musharraf couldn't or wouldn't control the ISI:
courting of Pakistan. ·The Indian Parliament was attacked in Dec 2001
·A leading moderate Kashmiri leader, Abdul Ghani,
was assassinated in May 2002
·An Indian army camp was attacked and 34 people
killed in May 2002.
The crisis between
India and Pakistan,
·The attacks angered the Indian government and it
mobilised its forces a million troops confronted each other
along the borders between India and Pakistan.
·The Indian PM, Vajpayee, talked of being ready for a
`decisive battle' in May 2002. India was now seemingly on
the verge of launching an attack, possibly to destroy the
militants' bases in Pakistani - controlled Kashmir.
·Pakistan was likely to lose a conventional war, but could
strike back with nuclear weapons, and unlike India it had no
`no first use' policy. With two inflamed opponents, unsure of
each other's threshold for nuclear war, and no `hotline', the
world was closer to the threat of nuclear war than at any
time since the 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis.…read more
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In the event the threat of war receded.
·It seems likely that the real Indian motive in 2002 was to ·The peace process continues, therefore, with both
compel the US to exert influence on Musharraf to stop the sides appearing keen to avoid a return to confrontation.
cross-border attacks there were high level US ·However, despite overtures from Musharraf, India has
interventions (for instance, a visit by Rumsfeld to both not been prepared to discuss any major changes to the
countries in 2002) and considerable US pressure on current situation in Kashmir.
Musharraf; the last thing the US wanted was for its war on ·Unless there is a settlement of this issue, it will be
terrorism to be thrown into chaos by a regional conflict. harder for Musharraf to rein in the jihadis and the peace
·The Indian leadership made conciliatory gestures ( "the process between India and Pakistan will remain
hand of friendship"), and Musharraf reciprocated by incomplete. There continue to be dangers in the
suggesting Pakistan might no longer insist on a referendum situation.
in Kashmir as part of a settlement (unacceptable to India).
The outcome was very positive.
·Relations between India and Pakistan have improved How could the conflict be resolved?
since 2002, and this state of affairs has continued under ·Division of Kashmir
Manmohan Singh's Congress government: ·Both sides would be given a degree of autonomy
·Agreement was reached on installing a hot line ·Completely given to Pakistan
in June 2004 to warn of nuclear incidents that ·Kashmir is given independence
could be mistaken for attacks. India and Pakistan ·Pakistani referendum so Kashmir can decide on its
agreed to give advance warning of ballistic missile own future
tests and to set up a hotline between coastguards ·India won't allow such a thing to happen
in October 2005. ·US defence intelligence agency estimate in 2002
·Trade links across the Line of Control in Kashmir 12 million would be killed in the first hour of nuclear
have been opened up, together with a bus was between India and Pakistan
service. ·US needs Pakistani alliance for `war on terror'
·India has also allowed moderate Kashmiri ·UK has made attempts to mediate between the 2
leaders to hold talks directly with Pakistan, so that powers in order to agree a peace settlement
the Kashmiris themselves are now effectively part
of the peace process, which is essential.…read more