Kashmir Teeters on the Edge

With an election coming in 2009 in India, the disputed Kashmir Valley, which has endured an uneasy peace since 2003, could become a flashpoint again, especially with both Pakistan and India facing domestic political crises. The events of June and July, in which the right-wing Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party accused India of knuckling under to Muslims over a failed attempt to construct shelters for Hindu pilgrims, could well be used by the BJP in the upcoming elections. On the Pakistani side, political instability for the fragile ruling coalition also carries the danger that activists will seek to exploit the Kashmir issue.

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