Ethnic Conflict: Kashmir

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The conflict in Kashmir dates all the way back to 1947 and still continues to this day. Kashmir is an 85,806 square mile territory North of India and East of Pakistan. Kashmir was one of the many states governed by British rule before gaining its independence in 1947. This independence was not truly meant to be permanent; the ruler, Maharaja Hari Singh, was meant to join Kashmir to either India or Pakistan. The majority of Kashmir’s population was Muslim, so Pakistan, being a Muslim nation, expected Kashmir to cede to them. Unfortunately, Maharaja was Hindu, so he remained neutral in the decision. This sent Pakistan into an uproar, and in October of 1947, Pakistan sent Muslim troops into Kashmir. Maharaja appealed to the Indian government for military assistance and signed the Instrument of Accession, ceding Kashmir to India; the first Indo-Pakistan war begins. This is the first of three wars to occur between India and Pakistan, none with a winner. India referred the conflict to the UN who asked Pakistan and India to remove their forces, although neither did. It finally ended in 1949 when a ceasefire agreement was made and the Line of Control was established. The LOC was meant to be temporary, but it continues to be the border between and India and Pakistan today, giving 65% of the territory to India and 35% to Pakistan. The second war occurred in 1965 when Pakistan crossed the LOC, thinking India was unable to defend their territory and that the Kashmir people

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