The controversial area of Kashmir witnessed a deadly attack last week, resulting in the deaths of at least 44 Indian soldiers. A vehicle loaded with 200 kilograms of explosives rammed into a convoy of Indian forces in the India-controlled district. A radical group, Jaish-e-Mohammad, claimed the attack. Following the attack, many countries offered their condolences, showing their solidarity with India. Moreover, rights groups and certain international actors made calls for a solution in Kashmir. However, the ongoing violence, caused by the violence in the past, is likely to beget more violence in the future.
Since the attack occurred, many analysts and politicians, speaking to the Indian and Pakistani media, foresee that the tensions will escalate. For instance, National Conference President Farooq Abdullah told Indian Zee News that, "The people of Kashmir are not responsible for the Pulwama attack, but such type of incidents will continue till the Kashmir issue is resolved politically." The reactions of the Indian government were even harsher. Federal Minister Arun Jaitley said his country would take "all possible diplomatic steps" to isolate Pakistan from the international community. Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi said the attackers and their "supporters" made a big mistake and will pay a heavy price. He also stated that Indian forces "have been given permission to take decisions about the timing, place and nature of their response… This is an India of new convention and policy."
Rajnath Singh, minister of home affairs, said his country would make sure the attackers are punished.
U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres condemned the attack. His spokesperson, Stephane Dujarric, said, "We strongly condemn today's attack in Jammu and Kashmir's Pulwama district and express our deepest condolences to the families of those who lost their lives and to the government and people of India." U.S. National Security Adviser John Bolton spoke to his Indian counterpart Ajit Doval on Friday. Bolton said the U.S. would cooperate with India to bring those behind the attack to justice.
Since the partition of India by the British Mandate rule in 1947, Kashmir has remained as one of the most controversial areas in the world, posing a constant threat to the peace in the region. Following the partition of the whole country, into Pakistan and India, the sectarian conflict was crystallized. Kashmir, which is home to Muslims along with Hindus, remained an unresolved dispute. The claims that Indian soldiers are humiliating the local Muslims have allegedly caused the formation of radical groups. For instance, the suicide bomber in the last attack also suffered from Indian soldiers' brutality.
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