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Tracking Conflict Worldwide

CrisisWatch is our global conflict tracker, a tool designed to help decision-makers prevent deadly violence by keeping them up-to-date with developments in over 80 conflicts and crises, identifying trends and alerting them to risks of escalation and opportunities to advance peace.

Entries: Kashmir

December 2020

Asia

Kashmir

Military clashes persisted along Line of Control (LoC, dividing Pakistan and Indian-administered Kashmir), while tensions escalated in Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) amid local elections. India 1 Dec claimed Pakistani cross-LoC fire killed oneborder security force officer. Pakistani military said Indian fire 9, 15, 23 and 30 Dec killed total of four soldiers. Pakistani MFA 18 Dec said Indian cross-LoC damaged two UN vehicles; India denied responsibility, UN same day said they were investigating. New Delhipolice 7 Dec arrested five suspected terrorists for alleged involvement in Pakistani attempt to link Kashmiri militant outfits with Sikh separatists. Pakistan’s armed forces 9 Dec reportedly on high alert following intelligence reports of India allegedly preparing an attack across LoC; Pakistan’s FM 18 Dec said that India plans “surgical strike against Pakistan”. In Indian-administered Kashmir, security forces 9 Dec killed two militants in Pulwama district; 13 Dec killed two militants and captured another in Poonch district, alleging theyhad infiltrated from Pakistan’s side of LoC to disrupt ongoing local elections which began 28 Nov. Militant attack on security forces 12 Dec killed two civilians in Baramulla district; 14 Dec attacked home of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) leader and former Hizbul Mujahideen militant Haji Parvez in regional capital Srinagar, killing one. J&K police 30 Dec announced death of three “terrorists” after 20-hour “encounter” with army on outskirts of Srinagar; families immediately protested outside police office, alleging all three were actually civilians. Opposition alliance accused govt of crackdown during local elections, which concluded 19 Dec with opposition alliance winning 112 of 280 seats. Notably, authorities 9 Dec placed former chief minister and PDP leader Mehbooba Mufti under house arrest for third time in two weeks; Mufti next day tweeted that armed forces were being used “to rig this election and favour a particular party”.In Anantnag district, police 10 Dec detained three journalists covering polls; militants 4 Dec also shot candidate. New Delhi 26 Dec arrested at least 75 Kashmiri political leaders and activists, placing them in “preventive detention” allegedly to pre-empt protests and violence.

November 2020

Asia

Kashmir

Cross-border tensions escalated sharply amid deadly incidents along Line of Control (LoC) dividing Pakistan and Indian-administered Kashmir, while insecurity persisted inside Jammu and Kashmir (J&K). Violence along LoC rose between New Delhi and Islamabad, with India suffering highest military casualty toll since April. Pakistan military said Indian fire 13, 22 and 25 Nov killed one soldier and 17 civilians. In turn, Indian officials claimed several attacks: 8 Nov clash with three militants attempting to infiltrate Indian side of LoC in Kupwara district, killing four soldiers; 13 Nov clash along LoC, killing five soldiers and six civilians, and Pakistani shelling same day, injuring 19 civilians; 21 Nov said Pakistani firing killed one soldier, and cross-LoC Pakistani firing injured two civilians; 27 Nov claimed two soldiers killed by Pakistani cross-LoC firing. Meanwhile in J&K, security forces 1 Nov killed leader of Kashmir’s largest militant group, Hizbul Mujahideen, on outskirts of regional capital Srinagar. In Pulwama district, militants 5 Nov killed one civilian and injured another in two separate attacks, and security forces next day killed two militants. Security forces 19 Nov killed four alleged Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) militants on highway leading to Srinagar; New Delhi 21 Nov lodged protest with Pakistan’s top diplomat, alleging four suspected JeM militants had infiltrated from Pakistan intending to carry out major terror attack. India 23 Nov claimed to have killed another intruder along international border, while militants 26 Nov killed two soldiers in Srinagar. Opposition alliance raised clampdown on its leaders and activists as authorities 25 Nov arrested Peoples Democratic Party youth wing leader on alleged terrorism charges. Pakistani FM Qureshi 14 Nov accused India of “financial and material sponsorship” of multiple Pakistani terrorist groups; Delhi next day rejected allegations. India 23 Nov shared file with UN Security Council members, alleging infiltration and attempted attacks by Pakistani militants in J&K; Pakistan’s UN ambassador next day responded by accusing India of sponsoring Pakistani terrorist groups. Organisation of Islamic Cooperation 28 Nov called on India to rescind 5 Aug actions that changed status of J&K; India next day rejected call. First District Development Council local election held 28 Nov.

October 2020

Asia

Kashmir

Militant attacks and counter-insurgency operations inside Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) continued at high intensity, while clashes persisted across Line of Control (LoC, dividing Pakistan and Indian-administered Kashmir). Inside J&K, militants 5 Oct killed three paramilitary police officers in Pulwama district and two others in regional capital Srinagar; militants 6 Oct attacked a ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader in Ganderbal district, killing security guard. Security forces same day killed three militants in Shopian district; in further operations police killed four militants in Kulgam and Pulwama districts 10 Oct, two in Srinagar 12 Oct and another in Anantnag district 17 Oct; security forces 26 Oct killed militant in Pulwama district, and two others in Bugdgam district the next day. Additional militant attacks injured police officer and civilian 17 Oct and paramilitary officer 18 Oct, both in Pulwama, and killed police officer in Anantnag district 19 Oct. Militants 29 Oct killed three BJP politicians in Kulgam. Tensions between New Delhi and Islamabad continued over reciprocal allegations of cross-LoC fire and Pakistan’s intention to hold legislative elections in Gilgit-Baltistan, formerly part of J&K, on 15 Nov; India accused Pakistan of cross-LoC fire that killed two soldiers and injured five others 1 Oct, killed army officer 5 Oct, and injured civilian and two border guards 10 Oct in two separate incidents that day. Pakistan claimed Indian fire was responsible for wounding two civilians 14 Oct. Authorities 13 Oct released former chief minister and Peoples Democratic Party leader Mehbooba Mufti after over one year in detention under controversial Public Safety Act, which allows detention for up to two years without charges, trials or judicial review; following release, Mufti said Kashmiris need to take back what New Delhi had taken away “illegally and in an undemocratic manner”, referring to govt’s 5 Aug 2019 revocation of constitutional article 370; all mainstream J&K parties 15 Oct formed alliance calling for restoration of region’s special constitutional status. Opposition parties also protested 27 Oct notification allowing non-residents to buy land in Jammu and Kashmir for first time.

 

September 2020

Asia

Kashmir

Counter-insurgency operations and militant attacks inside Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) continued at high intensity, while clashes persisted across Line of Control (LoC, dividing Pakistan and Indian-administered Kashmir). Notably, in J&K’s Baramulla district, clash with police 4 Sept killed three alleged Hizbul Mujahideen militants, police 11 Sept arrested three militants, and family members 16 Sept protested death in custody of youth in Sopore area. Hundreds 17 Sept protested and clashed with security forces in J&K capital Srinagar after police earlier that day shot dead civilian during operation that also killed three suspected militants. Army same day claimed to have averted a major militant attack in seizing 52kg of explosives in Pulwama district. Security forces 20-28 Sept killed militants in Srinagar, Budgam, Pulwama, Anatnag and Kupwara districts, while militant attacks in same period injured soldier in Budgam and killed civilian in Shopian district; unidentified gunmen 24 Sept killed prominent lawyer in Srinagar. Army 18 Sept reported three suspected militants killed in 18 July gunfight in Shopian were missing labourers from Rajouri, appearing to confirm case of extrajudicial killings. UN human rights chief 14 Sept criticised militant and security forces’ violence against civilians. Tensions between New Delhi and Islamabad continued with reciprocal allegations of cross-LoC fire: India accused Pakistan of cross-LoC fire that killed two soldiers 2-5 Sept and injured soldier 28 Sept. Pakistan claimed Indian fire was responsible for killing soldier 9 Sept, killing child and wounding seven civilians 13-17 Sept, killing three soldiers 23-26 Sept, and injuring two civilians 24 Sept. Islamabad and New Delhi traded rhetorical barbs in several international forums, including at UN Security Council meeting 3-4 Sept over Pakistan’s wish to add two Indian nationals to sanctions list, and India’s desire to remove Kashmir from council agenda. In UN General Assembly address 25 Sept, Pakistan’s PM Khan warned India was planning another “ill-conceived adventure” to divert attention from its illegal actions and rights abuses in J&K; India’s UN mission accused Pakistan of supporting terrorism and called on it to vacate all areas of Kashmir under its control. China and Pakistan 21 Sept condemned “unilateral actions that complicate the situation” in J&K.

August 2020

Asia

Kashmir

Militant attacks persisted inside Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) while clashes continued across Line of Control (LoC, dividing Pakistan and Indian-administered Kashmir). Militant attacks remained frequent in J&K, including on members of ruling-Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP): in Kulgram district, militants killed local BJP officials 4 and 6 Aug; militants 9 Aug shot BJP member in Budgam district, who died next day. Following attacks, several BJP members reportedly resigned; police officer 10 Aug said some 400 officials moved to secure accommodation elsewhere. Security forces 10 Aug detained two suspected militants in Sopore district and three more in Kupwara district next day; one soldier and two militants 12 Aug killed in clash in Pulwama district. Militants 14 Aug killed two police officers on outskirts of Srinagar, and next day killed civilian in Pulwama district. Militants 17 Aug attacked security post in Baramulla district, killing two paramilitary soldiers and police officer; 29 Aug attacked security forces at checkpoint in Panthachowk on outskirts of Srinagar, which left one policeman and three militants dead. Meanwhile, New Delhi 4 Aug imposed curfew on eve of first anniversary commemorating revocation of Article 370, which afforded Kashmir autonomous status. New Delhi 6 Aug appointed senior BJP leader Manoj Sinha as J&K lieutenant governor; Indian PM Modi 15 Aug said elections would be held in territory after finalisation of new electoral constituencies. New Delhi 18 Aug claimed security situation had improved and ordered withdrawal of 10,000 paramilitary personnel deployed in region since Aug 2019. All Kashmiri mainstream parties 22 Aug signed joint declaration vowing to “collectively fight to restore the special status of J&K as guaranteed under the constitution”. Meanwhile, cross-LoC fire between India and Pakistan continued: New Delhi accused Pakistan of cross-LoC fire that injured six civilians 7 Aug, including man who died 13 Aug. Islamabad claimed Indian fire responsible for killing woman and injuring nine civilians 7 Aug, and injuring two civilians 12 Aug. Pakistani PM Khan 5 Aug addressed Pakistan-administered Kashmir’s legislature calling India’s 5 Aug 2019 actions in J&K, which revoked its special constitutional status, “illegal and unilateral” and reiterated support for UN-mandated plebiscite in territory.

July 2020

Asia

Kashmir

Militant attacks and counter-insurgency operations inside Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) continued at high intensity, while clashes persisted across Line of Control (LoC, dividing Pakistan and Indian-administered Kashmir). In J&K, militants 1 July killed one paramilitary soldier in Baramullah district, and incident also left one man dead; controversy emerged over cause of additional casualty as Indian officials claimed militant gunfire killed man, while his family said security forces shot him. Militant and paramilitary member killed in clash in regional capital Srinagar 2 July; next day two militants killed in Kulgam district. In Pulwama district, bomb blast injured soldier 5 July and clash 7 July killed soldier and two militants. Next day, amid widespread strikes in Kashmir Valley to honour Hizbul Mujahideen commander Burhan Wani, whom security forces killed in 2016, militants killed local leader of ruling Bharatiya Janata Party in Bandipora district and two members of his family. Security forces killed three militants in Baramullah district 12 July, two in Anantnag district next day and three militants, including commander, in Kulgam district 17 July. Police reported killing two militants in gunfight in Ranbirgarh area of Srinagar 25 July. Tensions between New Delhi and Islamabad continued after reciprocal allegations of espionage saw half of diplomats in both capitals return home 30 June; India’s external ministry 2 July criticised announcement by Pakistan’s election commission on same day to hold local elections in Gilgit-Baltistan, formerly part of J&K; Pakistan’s foreign ministry next day responded India “remains in illegal occupation of parts of” J&K. Pakistani PM Imran Khan 14 July inaugurated building of dam in Gilgit-Baltistan, undertaken with Chinese assistance; New Delhi 16 July protested construction on “Indian union territories” J&K and Ladakh. Meanwhile, cross-LoC clashes between India and Pakistan continued; Islamabad claimed firing by Indian forces killed child 1 July; injured five civilians 5 July; injured six civilians 12 July and injured two civilians 17 July; New Delhi accused Pakistani forces of killing soldier 10 July and killing three civilians 17 July.

June 2020

Asia

Kashmir

Counter-insurgency operations inside Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) sharply intensified, amid ongoing clashes across Line of Control (LoC, dividing Pakistan and Indian-administered Kashmir). Month saw sharp increase in number of militants killed amid insurgent-related violence. Security forces killed over 35 militants 2-29 June in Pulwama district; 2 June killed two alleged Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) militants and suspected JeM commander, as well as two overground workers following day; 4 June killed militant in Rajouri district, while militant 6 June reportedly shot dead civilian in Baramulla district. In Shopian district, security forces targeted alleged Hizbul Mujahideen militants: 7-8 June killed nine militants – which triggered local protests and confrontations between demonstrators and security forces; 10 and 16 June killed seven more. Militants 9 June killed Kashmiri Hindu Pandit in Anantnag district. Security forces 18-19 June killed eight militants in Pulwama and Shopian districts, while police 22 June killed three fighters in gun battle in capital Srinagar. Gun battle between militants and security forces in Anantnag district 26 June killed paramilitary soldier and boy; security forces 26 June killed three militants in Pulwama district and 29 June killed three militants in Anantnag district. Army’s regional commander 8 June held Pakistan responsible for “inducting weapons and pushing weapons” into region. Meanwhile, cross-LoC fire between India and Pakistan continued amid sustained hostile rhetoric on both sides: New Delhi accused Pakistan of several days of cross-LoC fire beginning 2 June and said Pakistani fire 4 June killed two soldiers; 11 June killed soldier and wounded civilian; 22 June killed soldier; and 26 June injured girl. Islamabad claimed Indian fire responsible for spate of killings mid-month, including civilians 12-21 June. Pakistan’s Foreign Ministry 2 June urged international intervention to end Indian forces’ killings and rights abuses in J&K. Pakistan 12 June claimed to have arrested two “Indian spies” who allegedly crossed LoC into Gilgit Baltistan; claim followed New Delhi’s 31 May expulsion of two Pakistani diplomats on charges of “espionage” (see also India non-Kashmir).

May 2020

Asia

Kashmir

Militant attacks and counter-insurgency operations inside Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) continued at high intensity, while clashes across Line of Control (LoC, dividing Pakistan and Indian-administered Kashmir) persisted. Security forces 2 May killed two militants in Pulwama district; five security forces next day killed during operation which also left two militants dead in Handwara area, Kupwara district; grenade attack injured paramilitary soldier in Srinagar city 4 May. After security forces 6 May killed Riyaz Naikoo, top commander of Hizbul Mujahideen militant group, and three other militants in Pulwama district, protesters clashed with police, and mobile phone and internet services cut for three days in region. Soldier and another Hizbul Mujahideen commander 17 May killed in gunfight in Doda district. Militant commander and son of separatist Tehreek-e-Hurriyat chairperson next day killed in Srinagar along with another militant; 22 houses burnt down during encounter, with local residents accusing security forces of using them as “human shields” and looting their belongings; security forces 24 May detained four alleged Lashkar-e-Tayyaba-linked militants in Budgam district and 30 May three in Baramulla district. Govt continued crackdown on political leaders in J&K; authorities 5 May extended for three months detention under controversial Public Safety Act (PSA) of former Kashmiri Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti, of former Minister Mohammad Sagar, and of Mufti’s uncle, Sartaj Madani; former Kashmiri Chief Minister Omar Abdullah same day said PM Modi “single handedly pushed J&K back decades”. Detention of Shah Faesal, who founded J&K People’s Movement party last year, also extended for three months under PSA on 13 May. Cross-LoC fire continued amid hostile rhetoric on both sides; Indian army claimed Pakistani fire 1 May killed two soldiers and injured three civilians; Islamabad 7 May accused India of “deliberately targeting” civilians, said fire had injured total of ten civilians on 7, 18, and 20 May. Indian army chief 4 May accused Pakistan of “limited agenda” of sending terrorists into J&K, warning of “proportionate response to all acts of infringement”; Pakistani foreign ministry 7 May rejected “baseless Indian claims”, said allegations were attempt to create “false flag” military operation against Pakistan.

April 2020

Asia

Kashmir

Militant attacks and counter-insurgency operations inside Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) sharply intensified, while clashes across Line of Control (LoC, dividing Pakistan and Indian-administered Kashmir) continued. Militant related-violence spiked in J&K: in Anantang district, militants 2 April killed local resident and same day killed paramilitary officer; paramilitary forces said they had killed four alleged Hizbul Mujahideen militants in Kulgram district 4 April; next day, army claimed five suspected militants, who infiltrated across LoC, killed in clash in Kupwara district, which reportedly also killed five soldiers; police 8 April reported govt forces killed militant in clash in Baramulla district; following day, security forces killed alleged Jaish-e-Mohammed militant in Sopore town; police official 17 April said govt forces killed four militants in two separate clashes in Kishtwar and Shopian districts; security forces 26 April killed four alleged militants in Ashtal village, Kulgram. Cross-LoC fire between India and Pakistan continued amid increased hostile rhetoric on both sides. Following new set of domicile rules for J&K issued by Indian govt 1 April, easing rules for securing permanent residence, including for students, civil and military personnel and their children, Pakistani PM Khan next day tweeted law was attempt to “illegally alter the demography” of Kashmir “in violation of all international laws & treaties”; Indian external affairs ministry 4 April responded Islamabad would best serve J&K by “ending cross-border terrorism and desisting from its campaign of violence and false propaganda”. Pakistani army 9 April said it shot down Indian surveillance drone, though India denied ownership; India army 10 April reported Pakistani cross-LoC firing killed three civilians; Pakistani military said Indian firing seriously injured six civilians 11 April and killed young child 13 April; senior Indian commander 13 April alleged Pakistani army attempted to infiltrate COVID-19 infected people into Kashmir Valley, accusations Pakistan branded as “baseless”. Indian army chief 17 April accused Islamabad of “fomenting trouble” and “exporting terror” into Kashmir during pandemic; same day, Pakistani foreign ministry rejected allegations as “irresponsible” and “spurious”.

March 2020

Asia

Kashmir

Tension and clashes between Indian and Pakistani forces along Line of Control (LoC, dividing Pakistan and Indian-administered Kashmir) continued, while new political party emerged within Jammu and Kashmir (J&K). Islamabad claimed Indian forces 17 March killed Pakistani soldier in cross-LoC shelling. At South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation virtual summit to develop regional strategy against COVID-19 spread, Pakistani participant 16 March called for lifting of lockdown in J&K, with India’s external ministry spokesperson responding summit “not a political platform” and “Pakistan misused it”. Within J&K, new political party Jammu and Kashmir Apni (Our Own) launched in Srinagar 8 March; Apni headed by Altaf Bukhari, formerly with Mufti’s Peoples Democratic Party, whose head former Kashmir’s Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti is currently detained, also includes defectors from other major Kashmiri parties; Apni delegation led by Bukhari 14 March met PM Modi in New Delhi and declared support for Aug 2019 revoking of J&K special constitutional status, while Modi and Home Minister Amit Shah promised to revive J&K’s statehood in future. Leader of opposition in upper house of parliament 14 March met with Farooq Abdullah, former chief minister released previous day after charges under Public Safety Act were revoked, called on govt to release all Kashmiri political prisoners and dismissed Apni as creation of Indian intelligence agencies. Former Kashmir chief minister Omar Abdullah 24 March released after eight months in detention. Militant-related insecurity continued; militant attack in Baramulla district killed two including police officer 4 March; security forces 15 March killed four suspected Laskhar-e-Tayyaba and Hizbul Mujahideen militants during clash in Anantnag district; suspected militants 27 March shot dead civilian in Kulgam district.

February 2020

Asia

Kashmir

Amid continued clashes between Indian and Pakistani forces along Line of Control (LoC, dividing Pakistan and Indian-administered Kashmir), tensions remained high. Pakistan claimed Indian cross-LoC shelling killed two civilians 9 Feb, reportedly killed Indian soldier in retaliatory fire next day. Indian officials 25 Feb reported that Pakistani shelling along LoC same day injured two civilians; Pakistan 26 Feb claimed that India 25 Feb had violated ceasefire along LoC, injuring one civilian. Following heightened rhetoric between Islamabad and New Delhi over territory in late Jan, Turkish President Erdoğan 14 Feb expressed concern about India’s “unilateral steps” during trip to Islamabad, called for resolution through justice instead of “conflict or oppression”; in response, Indian foreign ministry spokesperson Raveesh Kumar next day rejected statement, called on Turkey “to not interfere in India’s internal affairs and develop proper understanding”. In press conference with Pakistani FM Qureshi in Islamabad, UN Sec Gen Guterres 16 Feb expressed “deep concern” at heightened tensions, calling on India to respect “human rights and fundamental freedoms” inside Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) and reiterating offer to mediate; New Delhi rejected offer with Kumar stating “there is no role or scope for third-party mediation”. Within J&K, authorities 6 Feb charged former Chief Ministers Omar Abdullah and Mehbooba Mufti under controversial Public Safety Act, which allows detention for up to two years without charges, trials or judicial review; Abdullah’s family 10 Feb petitioned Supreme Court against decision. Kashmir Valley and parts of Jammu observed complete shutdown following separatist Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF)’s call for strike. The first such strike call by a separatist group since India’s 5 Aug actions in Kashmir marked anniversaries of 9 Feb 2013 execution of Kashmiri militant accused of attacking the Indian parliament in 2001, and 11 Feb 1984 hanging of JKLF founder Maqbool Bhat for 1966 alleged killing of Indian intelligence officer.

January 2020

Asia

Kashmir

Amid heightened rhetoric and threats, clashes continued between Indian and Pakistani forces along Line of Control (LoC, dividing Pakistan and Indian-administered Kashmir). Following late-Dec clashes that left several dead on both sides and Indian army chief’s 31 Dec warning that India reserved right “to pre-emptively strike” at sources of terror threat inside Pakistan for Islamabad’s “policy of state-sponsored terrorism”, Pakistan’s military spokesperson 14 Jan tweeted Indian statements were “irresponsible rhetoric with implications for regional peace and stability”; in 11 Jan tweet, spokesperson said Pakistani army “fully prepared to respond to any act of Indian aggression”. Indian PM Modi 28 Jan said India would need “week to ten days” to defeat Pakistan if war broke out; Pakistan’s military spokesperson 30 Jan responded “India will start the war, but we will end it”. UN Security Council 15 Jan reviewed situation in Indian-administered Kashmir in closed door meeting requested by China; same day, Chinese ambassador to UN said Beijing recognised Kashmir as territory disputed between India and Pakistan. Next day, Indian govt spokesperson said China should keep to “global consensus on Kashmir and avoid raising” issue at UN. Within Jammu and Kashmir (J&K), security forces 25 Jan killed three militants, including Jaish-e-Mohammed commander Qari Yasir, in clash in Pulwama district; police 31 Jan killed three suspected militants in gunfight on Jammu-Srinagar highway. Govt 24 Jan restored limited internet services, suspended since 5 Aug; previously, Indian Supreme Court 10 Jan ruled internet shutdown unconstitutional but did not direct restoral of all internet. Diplomats from fifteen countries including U.S. visited Kashmir 9-10 Jan, first diplomatic visit since India’s 5 Aug revoking of J&K’s special constitutional status and initiation of lockdown; EU diplomats declined invitation, reportedly asking for “freedom to meet people unescorted”. Late-Dec J&K Congress president, senior VP and former minister placed under house arrests before visit to southern Kashmir; police 12 Jan arrested Davinder Singh – senior police officer who met diplomats 9 Jan – and two Kashmiri militants from Hizbul Mujahideen accompanying him, in southern Kashmir.

December 2019

Asia

Kashmir

Tensions persisted over Indian govt’s revoking of Jammu & Kashmir (J&K) special constitutional status in Aug and clashes across Line of Control (LoC, dividing Pakistan and Indian-administered Kashmir) continued. In string of cross-LoC clashes, Pakistani military claimed Indian fire killed three civilians in mid-Dec, injured two soldiers 1 Dec; Indian armed forces 18 Dec reported clashes left one Indian soldier dead; Indian army chief same day warned skirmishes could escalate at any time. At least four killed during exchange of fire between Pakistan and India 25 Dec including at least one Indian soldier and two Pakistani soldiers. In Indian-administered Kashmir, suspected Kashmiri militants 26 Nov killed at least two in two grenade attacks, one in Hakura village, south of Srinagar, and the other at the University of Kashmir in Srinagar; security forces killed two suspected militants in Pulwama district 25-26 Nov. New Union Territory administration 25 Nov released two political leaders, one each from People’s Democratic Party (PDP) and Democratic Party Nationalist; Police 30 Dec released five political activists, two from Jammu & Kashmir National Conference (NC), and one each from Congress and PDP. New Delhi 27 Dec partially lifted internet shutdown imposed on newly formed Ladakh union territory in Aug, restored internet in north-western Kargil district; internet blackout remained in place in J&K. China 17 Dec postponed bid to hold closed-door UN Security Council briefing same day on situation in Indian-administered Kashmir after UN peacekeeping mission said it was not ready to deliver brief, allegedly because France, U.S., UK and Russia opposed discussing bilateral issue in UN forum. Pakistan media reported 29 Dec Saudi Arabia has decided to convene Organisation of Islamic Cooperation’s special meeting on Kashmir in April.

November 2019

Asia

Kashmir

Tensions continued over India’s revocation of Jammu & Kashmir (J&K) special constitutional status, amid ongoing clashes between India and Pakistan at Line of Control (LoC, dividing Pakistan and Indian-administered Kashmir), and India’s deployment of joint special forces to J&K to combat attacks by militants. At LoC, Indian military 8 Nov reported death of soldier from Pakistani shelling; improvised explosive device attack 17 Nov killed one Indian soldier and injured two in Pallanwalla sector. Within J&K, unclaimed grenade attack 4 Nov killed one civilian and injured dozens in Srinagar; further grenade attacks 26 Nov killed two in Badasgam village including govt official and injured four civilians in attack in Srinagar. Indian armed forces 26 Nov killed two suspected militants in Pulwama district. Indian govt 24 Nov announced joint deployment of special forces from army, navy and air force under new Armed Forces Special Operations Division, to conduct combined counter-terrorism operations against militants in Kashmir valley. Indian Home Ministry 15 Nov claimed situation in Kashmir close to normalcy but refused to provide timeframe for release of Kashmiri chief ministers detained since Aug; several released during month. Home Minister Amit Shah’s 20 Nov declaration that situation was “fully normal” prompted traders to shut down shops in protest. Indian media 25 Nov reported handful of businesses being allowed to restore internet for first time since Aug but under strict conditions, after promising connections would be used “for business purposes only” and accepting to give “complete access … as and when required by security agencies”; use of connections for social media, proxies, virtual private networks and Wi-Fi banned, and access for general public remains suspended. Pakistan PM Khan 9 Nov called for renewed talks with India including on resolution of Kashmir dispute at inauguration of India-Pakistan border crossing at Kartapur corridor connecting two Sikh shrines, first ever visa-free border crossing between countries. U.S. Congress Commission on Human Rights 14 Nov opened public hearing on human rights situation in Kashmir.

October 2019

Asia

Kashmir

Tensions remained high between India and Pakistan over former’s revoking of Jammu & Kashmir (J&K) special constitutional status, and continued clashes across Line of Control (LoC, dividing Pakistan and Indian-administered Kashmir). New Delhi 31 Oct formally divided state into two federally-administered “union territories”, J&K and Ladakh. In continued clashes across LoC, Pakistani military sources claimed Indian fire killed soldier 10 Oct and three civilians 15 Oct. Spike in cross-LoC attacks 20 Oct with India claiming to have targeted three militant camps allegedly used for infiltration into India-administered Kashmir, reporting two soldiers killed by Pakistani fire, and claiming to have killed five Pakistani soldiers in retaliation; Pakistan claimed to have killed nine Indian soldiers. Pakistani PM Khan 8 Oct met with Chinese President Xi in Beijing in bid to gain support over Kashmir; joint statement declared China’s opposition to “any unilateral action that complicates the situation”, which should be resolved based on UN Charter, “relevant UN Security Council resolutions and bilateral agreements”. India criticised China for commenting on “internal affairs”; Xi and Indian PM Modi did not mention Kashmir during meeting in India 12 Oct. Within J&K, clashes continued including police claiming to have killed three militants in south 16 Oct. New Delhi began easing some restrictions including 10 Oct releasing three mid-level politicians and 14 Oct restoring some mobile phone connections, though other connections and internet services remained blocked. Govt re-blocked text messaging services hours later after militants killed truck driver in Shopian district; militants 29 Oct killed five migrant labourers in Kulgam district. National Conference party delegation 6 Oct met detained leaders Farooq Abdullah and son Omar; party’s provincial head said “mainstream leaders have to be released” to start political process with New Delhi. Delegation of 23 largely far-right European parliamentarians visited Kashmir in “private capacity” late Oct. In Pakistan-administered Kashmir, hundreds of supporters of pro-independence Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front marched toward LoC intending to cross it, but were barred by govt; Khan stated anyone crossing LoC “will play into the Indian narrative” of terrorism.

September 2019

Asia

Kashmir

Fallout from Indian govt’s revoking of Jammu & Kashmir (J&K) special constitutional status in Aug continued, amid sustained clashes along Line of Control (LoC, dividing Pakistan and Indian-administered Kashmir). Tensions remained high between India and Pakistan, with New Delhi insisting changes to J&K’s status was internal matter and Islamabad demanding reversal of decision. Despite rejecting India’s 29 Aug allegation that Pakistan was trying to infiltrate militants into J&K to create “alarmist situation”, Pakistan military spokesperson 4 Sept said “Kashmir is our jugular vein” and will be fought for “until our last bullet, soldier and breath”. Pakistani PM Khan 18 Sept statement made resumption of bilateral dialogue with India conditional on revival of J&K’s special status and end to security lockdown; Khan also stated any Pakistanis wishing to fight in Kashmir would do “greatest injustice to the Kashmiris” and give India pretext to “blame Pakistan for cross-border terrorism and infiltrating terrorists”. U.S. Assistant Sec State 19 Sept welcomed Khan’s statement and said Pakistan’s commitment to counter-terror groups was “critical to regional stability”. During speech to UN General Assembly 27 Sept, Khan warned of “bloodbath” once lockdown in J&K is lifted. Indian and Pakistani military continued clashing along LoC, including deaths of two Pakistani soldiers 12 and 14 Sept. Security lockdown and communications blackout continued through month in most Muslim-majority areas of J&K; UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Bachelet 9 Sept expressed concern about restrictions on internet communications, peaceful assembly and detention of local leaders and activists. Reuters reported Indian govt 6 Sept report showed 3,800 people have been arrested in J&K since clampdown started, 2,600 of them subsequently released. Indian govt 15 Sept formally charged former J&K chief minister Farooq Abdullah under controversial Public Safety Act, which allows detention for up to two years without charges, trials or judicial review. Six militants and a soldier reported killed 28 Sept during two separate clashes in J&K.

August 2019

Asia

Kashmir

Indian govt revoked Jammu & Kashmir (J&K) special constitutional status, arrested J&K politicians and put Muslim-majority region under lockdown, raising tensions with Pakistan and risking new violence along Line of Control (LoC, dividing Pakistan and Indian-administered Kashmir) and within J&K. Fulfilling 2019 electoral promise to ultra-nationalist Hindu constituency, Indian PM Modi 5 Aug revoked Kashmir’s autonomous status under constitutional article 370, including article 35-A which gave permanent residents sole rights to own property within J&K and employment with local government. Lower house of Parliament 6 Aug passed Kashmir Reorganisation Bill dividing J&K into two territories (J&K and Ladakh) and downgrading status from state to Union Territories, J&K having legislature with limited powers, Ladakh having no legislature. Indian govt 2-5 Aug deployed tens of thousands of additional troops in J&K, imposed communication blackout and detained around 300 Kashmiri politicians, including former Kashmiri Chief Ministers Omar Abdullah and Mehbooba Mufti. Despite crackdown, 10,000 people 9 Aug protested and clashed with police in Srinagar. In Baramulla district, militant 21 Aug fired on police, killing one officer before being killed. Communication blackout remained throughout J&K end month. BBC 29 Aug published report alleging beatings and torture of civilians by security forces. On day of 5 Aug announcement, Pakistani govt called decision “unlawful and destabilising”, with PM Khan next day raising concerns over possible ethnic cleansing in J&K and India using militant attacks as pretext for “conventional war”; 7 Aug downgraded diplomatic relations with India and suspended bilateral trade. UN Sec-Gen Guterres 8 Aug called on “all parties to refrain” from steps affecting J&K’s status and to exercise “maximum restraint”; UN Security Council 16 Aug held closed door consultative meeting on J&K, first in over 50 years, prompting India’s criticism of “international interference”. In cross-LoC clashes, India 3 Aug claimed to have killed five to seven Pakistani commandos during failed Pakistani incursion; Islamabad 15 Aug said four soldiers died by Indian firing and claimed to have killed five Indian soldiers same day and six 20 Aug.

July 2019

Asia

Kashmir

Indian and Pakistani forces continued to exchange fire along Line of Control (LoC, dividing Pakistan and Indian-administered Kashmir) and separatists clashed with security forces in Indian-administered Jammu and Kashmir (J&K). In cross-LoC clashes, explosion 3 July killed five Pakistani soldiers in Bhimber district of Pakistani-controlled Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK), Pakistani military statement accusing India of “state sponsored terrorism”; India defence spokesperson 6 July said Pakistani cross-border firing killed two soldiers in Rajouri district. International Court of Justice 17 July ruled Pakistan must grant consular access to Indian naval officer sentenced to death in April 2017 on spying charges, while calling for “effective review” of case. UN Office of High Commissioner for Human Rights 8 July released update report into May 2018-April 2019 situation in Indian- and Pakistan-administered Kashmir, expressing concern that past rights concerns raised in June 2018 report had yet to be addressed, and reiterating need that govts address past and ongoing human rights violations; India criticised report, Pakistan said it confirmed accusations of Indian rights abuses in Kashmir. In J&K, Indian home minister 10 July reported 93 militants killed since Feb 2019 Pulwama terrorist attack as clashes between security forces and militants continued. In Shopian district, police 5 July killed militant allegedly affiliated with Hizbul Mujahideen and 17 July killed militant allegedly affiliated with Pakistan-based Lashkar-e-Tayyaba; police 27 July killed Jaish-e-Mohammed commander Munna Bhai and associate. In Pulwama district, unidentified gunmen 30 July injured People’s Democratic Party (PDP) local leader Lateef Ahmed.

June 2019

Asia

Kashmir

Pakistan attempted to restart bilateral dialogue process with India, while militant attacks against security forces continued in Indian-administered Jammu and Kashmir (J&K). Pakistani PM Khan and FM Qureshi renewed offers to resume dialogue – frozen since 2016 terror attacks in India’s Punjab province that New Delhi attributes to Pakistan-based militants Jaish-e-Mohammad (Jaish) – in letters sent to Indian counterparts 8 June; Pakistani official 20 June claimed Indian PM Modi and FM Jaishankar “responded positively”; Indian officials same day rejected Pakistani account, reporting Modi stressed importance of environment “free of terror” as condition to resume talks. In J&K, militant-related violence continued. In Pulwama district, security forces 7-14 June killed six alleged Jaish militants, including two police deserters, and 26 June killed suspected Lashkar-e-Tayyaba member while explosion killed two soldiers 17 June. In Anantang district, militants 12-18 June launched several attacks on security forces, leaving at least ten soldiers and four militants dead. Security forces 11 June gunned down two militants in Shopian district. Following May general elections and low turnout in J&K, former J&K Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti 19 June called for ceasefire and resumption of political dialogue with all stakeholders in Kashmir.

May 2019

Asia

Kashmir

Exchanges of fire between Indian and Pakistani forces continued along Line of Control (LoC, dividing Pakistan and Indian-administered Kashmir) and separatists clashed with security forces in Indian-administered Jammu and Kashmir (J&K), while international pressure increased on Pakistan to crack down on terrorist groups. UN 1267 Sanctions Committee 1 May placed Masood Azhar, leader of Jaish-e-Mohammad (Jaish which claimed Feb Pulwama attack) on global terrorist blacklist after China withdrew its objections to his inclusion; U.S. welcomed addition, and appealed for “further and sustained actions” from Pakistan against militant and terrorist groups on its territory.  Pakistan 11 May banned eleven groups under Anti-Terrorism Act, due to affiliation with UN-sanctioned jihadist organisations like Jaish and Jamaat-ud-Dawa (formerly Lashkar-e-Tayyaba (LeT)). In cross-LoC clashes, Islamabad claimed Indian cross-border fire killed one civilian 2 May and two others 6 May. In J&K, separatists launched attacks and security forces stepped up counter-terrorism efforts, as final phase of voting for general elections began 6 May. In Anantnag district, militants 6 May killed local leader of Bharatiya Janata Party. In southern Shopian district, police 10 May claimed to have killed militant belonging to Islamic State in Jammu and Kashmir; 12 May killed two LeT militants; police also reported eight people killed in two separate clashes 16 May in Shopian and Pulwama, including six Jaish militants. In capital Srinagar, thousands protested during funeral procession of Al-Qaeda-affiliated rebel commander Zakir Musa, killed by security forces in Pulwama district 23 May.

April 2019

Asia

Kashmir

Relations between Pakistan and India remained tense with continued clashes across Line of Control (LoC, dividing Pakistan and Indian-administered Kashmir), while within Indian-administered Jammu and Kashmir (J&K), Indian security forces continued repression of separatists. In cross-LoC clashes, Pakistan claimed Indian fire killed three soldiers and one civilian 2 April and one civilian 15 April, while claiming retaliatory Pakistani fire killed five Indian troops 5 April. India 18 April suspended cross-LoC trade claiming it was used by “Pakistan-based elements” to traffic weapons, drugs and money. Pakistan 27 March formally rejected India’s dossier holding militant group Jaish-e-Mohammed responsible for Feb attack on Indian security forces in J&K, saying it failed to prove involvement of Pakistan-based elements and asking for further evidence. Pakistan FM Qureshi 2 April asked U.S. to broker dialogue with India and 7 April said govt had informed UN Security Council that India intended to launch attack inside Pakistan later in month. Inside J&K, suppression continued with over 1,000 people reportedly arrested since deadly Feb attack; security forces 25 April claimed to have killed two militants in gunfight in Anantnag district (centre). J&K residents 18 April voted in general election amid calls from separatists for boycott and threats from militants, and reports of clashes between protesters and security forces; reported turnout 45.5% in J&K but under 10% in some constituencies including Srinagar. Ruling-Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) 8 April released election manifesto supporting abrogation of articles 35-A and 370 of Constitution that give J&K special status, while main opposition Indian National Congress committed to amending law that gives impunity to special forces in J&K.

March 2019

Asia

Kashmir

Despite reduction in India-Pakistan tensions, cross-Line of Control (LoC, dividing Pakistan and Indian-administered Kashmir) clashes continued, along with Indian security forces’ repression of separatists within Indian-administered Jammu and Kashmir (J&K). In what it called “goodwill gesture”, Pakistan 1 March released captured Indian pilot whose plane it had shot down 27 Feb, while Pakistan and India High Commissioners returned to their posts 9 March. In first major diplomatic encounter since escalation, delegations from both countries met in Indian border village 14 March to discuss technical modalities of Kartarpur corridor facilitating Indian Sikh pilgrims visiting Pakistan-based religious site; Indian Foreign Ministry said meeting did not represent resumption of bilateral dialogue. Cross-LoC clashes between Pakistan and Indian militaries continued; Pakistan claimed Indian fire killed one civilian 1 March and two soldiers 2 March; India 24 March claimed one Indian soldier killed in cross-LoC clash. Pakistani navy 5 March claimed to have prevented Indian submarine entering Pakistani waters. U.S. National Security Adviser John Bolton 11 March called for “meaningful steps” against Jaish-e-Muhammad militant group that carried out Feb terror attack in J&K, and “other terrorist groups operating from Pakistan”. China 13 March placed “technical hold” on UN Security Council resolution proposing to list Jaish chief Masood Azhar as global terrorist. Inside J&K, security forces continued sweeping operations against suspected militants and detained scores of separatist leaders and supporters, particularly targeting Jamaat-i-Islami, which it banned 28 Feb; govt 22 March banned separatist Jammu Kashmir Liberation Front. Police 19 March announced teacher arrested as part of “terror case investigation” had died in custody, leading to large demonstrations in Pulwama district (south) and clashes with security forces. Security forces 29 March claimed to have killed two Jaish “terrorists” and four militants in Budgam, Shopian (west) and Kupwara (north west) districts. Govt 10 March excluded J&K from general elections scheduled to begin 11 April on security grounds; Kashmiri leaders criticised move as extending central govt’s control over state.

February 2019

Asia

Kashmir

Deadliest terror attack in over 30 years in Indian-administered Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) and Indian and Pakistani airstrikes across Line of Control (LoC, dividing Pakistan and Indian-administered Kashmir), first since 1971 India-Pakistan war, led to spike in tensions between India and Pakistan and within J&K, with fears of further escalation. Pakistani-based Jaish-e-Muhammad 14 Feb launched suicide car bomb attack on convoy of Indian paramilitaries in Pulwama district, 30km from capital Srinagar, killing some 45 security personnel. Govt imposed curfew, sent thousands of paramilitary personnel to region, and detained some 200 opposition leaders and supporters of separatist parties. Security forces claimed to have killed two top Jaish-e-Muhammad in Pulwama 18 Feb, and three in Kulgam district 24 Feb; several members of security forces also killed during security operations. Separatists in J&K held strikes in protest at operations; New Delhi 17 Feb removed security protection from five separatist leaders, prompting fears that attack on separatist leadership could further destabilise region. Indian govt accused Pakistan of complicity in 14 Feb attack, with PM Modi warning of “befitting reply” and giving security forces “permission to take decisions about the timing, place and nature of their response”; Pakistan rejected role in attack; both sides withdrew diplomats. Pakistani PM Khan 19 Feb offered to cooperate in investigation but warned of immediate retaliation if attacked. Indian air force 26 Feb claimed to have carried out “pre-emptive” airstrikes on Jaish-e-Muhammad training camp in Balakot in Pakistan’s Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, claiming to have killed “large number” of militants. Pakistan military denied Indian airstrikes had caused casualties and responded with airstrikes across LoC 27 Feb, claiming to have shot down two Indian planes in Pakistan airspace, and capturing pilot; India claimed to have shot down Pakistani fighter jet in Indian-Kashmir. China and EU urged both nations to show restraint, calling on Pakistan to end support for jihadist groups; U.S. warned further military action by both countries posed “unacceptably high” escalation risks. Supreme Court 22 Feb called on authorities to protect Kashmiris facing intimidation and attacks in Hindu-majority J&K and other northern Indian states. *This entry was corrected on 2 March 2019 to place Balakot in Pakistan's Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, not Azad Jammu and Kashmir, as first reported by Pakistan.

January 2019

Asia

Kashmir

Militant violence continued in Indian-administered Jammu and Kashmir (J&K), while uptick in cross-border shelling by Pakistani and Indian militaries fuelled bilateral tensions. In J&K, army 8 Jan reported it killed one militant during attack on army patrol in Pulwama district (south). Militants 11 Jan killed army major and one other soldier in bomb along Line of Control (LoC, dividing Pakistan and Indian-administered Kashmir) in Rajouri district (south west). Security forces 12 Jan killed two militants in Kulgram district (south); during funeral next day, eleven protesters were injured in clashes with security forces. Separatists 26 Jan held general strike on Indian Republic Day, while govt suspended mobile internet services. Clashes continued between Pakistani and Indian militaries across LoC leading to reciprocal accusations of ceasefire violations. In Pakistani-administered Kashmir (AJK), Pakistani military blamed India for cross-border shelling that killed civilian in Bhimber district (south) 7 Jan and another in Shahkot sector 9 Jan; meanwhile, India 15 Jan claimed Pakistani cross-border firing killed security force officer. Pakistani army 18 Jan claimed to have killed three Indian soldiers at border post while responding to Indian shelling, and earlier claimed to have shot down Indian spy drones along LoC 1 and 2 Jan; AJK PM Haider 2 Jan warned India was creating “warlike situation” along LoC. Pakistan FM Qureshi 6 Jan denied Indian media reports that Pakistani forces were working with militant group Lashkar-e-Tayyaba to carry out “surgical strike” on Indian posts along LoC. Inflammatory rhetoric added to tensions, with Pakistani foreign ministry early Jan warning India of risks of “strategic miscalculation”, while Indian army chief 15 Jan claimed Pakistan continued to support terrorists and said India would have “decisive success” if forced into war. Qureshi 29 Jan held phone call with separatist leader Mirwaiz Umar Farooq; Indian govt next day summoned Pakistani envoy to complain of “brazen attempt” to subvert Indian sovereignty.

December 2018

Asia

Kashmir

With expiration of six-month governor’s rule in Indian-administered Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) 19 Dec, Indian president same day Dec signed proclamation paving way for imposition of president’s rule, as recommended by J&K Governor Satya Pal Malik 17 Dec in wake of Nov dissolution of state assembly. Presidential rule can be imposed for two six-monthly terms if state elections are not held; governor’s rule had been imposed in June after collapse of People’s Democratic Party (PDP)-led coalition govt. Violence continued, including 9 Dec deaths of two teenage alleged militants – one of them fourteen, believed to be youngest militant killed in three decades of conflict – sparking major anti-India protests in northern town Hajin. Security forces 10 Dec killed three suspected militants on outskirts of J&K capital Srinagar. Security forces 15 Dec shot dead seven civilians protesting military operation same day in Pulwama district (south) in which three militants and one soldier killed; in response, demonstrations and shut-down strikes held 15-17 Dec in Srinagar and elsewhere in valley on call of Joint Resistance Leadership composed of separatist Kashmiri factions. In clashes in Pulwama district, military reported at least four militants killed in encounter 29 Dec, prompting local protesters to attack security forces. Indian defence spokesman said firing by Pakistani troops along Line of Control (LoC) 26 Dec killed one civilian in J&K’s Rajouri district; Pakistani officials reported firing by Indian troops 31 Dec killed one woman and injured nine civilians (Indian military denied).

November 2018

Asia

Kashmir

Jammu and Kashmir Governor Satya Pal Malik 21 Nov dissolved state legislative assembly, citing “impossibility of forming a stable government by the coming together of political parties with opposing ideologies”. Election Commission next day said new elections to be held within next six months. Violence in region continued; Indian security forces 30 Oct reported they killed two militants in Tral district, including nephew of Pakistan-based jihadist Jaish-e-Mohammad chief Masood Azhar; 1 Nov killed two suspected militants in Budgam district; 6 Nov killed two suspected militants and 25 Nov killed at least six suspected militants and one civilian youth in Shopian district; six militants killed 23 Nov in gun battle with security forces in Anantnag district. Authorities imposed curfew 2 Nov to forestall religious violence after armed men killed Anil Parihar, ruling BJP’s state secretary and his brother in Kishtwar town previous day. Reported death toll for 2018 – 400 according to Indian army figures – worst in a decade. Pakistani officials said cross-Line of Control (LoC) firing by Indian troops claimed several lives in Azad Jammu and Kashmir bordering villages including one woman killed 2 Nov, and 10 Nov critically injured five civilians. In wake of ceasefire violations in recent months, Indian and Pakistan armies 23 Nov held brigade commander-level meeting at Poonch-Rawlakote border crossing to recommit to 2003 ceasefire agreement. India 22 Nov approved building of new border entry point and road connecting northern State of Punjab to border with Pakistan, making it easier for Sikh pilgrims to visit holy site. India 23 Nov protested harassment and denial of access to their Islamabad-based High Commission officials at two centres of worship near Lahore to meet Indian pilgrims visiting Pakistan under 1974 Bilateral Protocol.

October 2018

Asia

Kashmir

In Indian-administered Kashmir, first of four rounds of local elections in Jammu and Kashmir state – first since 2005 – began 8 Oct amid boycott by two mainstream parties and violence between militants and govt. Ruling Bharatiya Janata Party made some advances, winning around 100 wards in valley: Congress won 175; both benefited from National Conference and People’s Democratic Party boycott of the polls over govt’s “lack of clarity” on legal challenge to Article 35-A of Constitution, which provides special rights and privileges to Jammu and Kashmir’s permanent residents. Tensions rose in valley after security forces 11 Oct reportedly killed high profile Hizbul Mujahideen militant Manan Wani in Hardwara, Kupwara district (north west); separatists organised complete shut-down next day. Police 21 Oct killed three suspected militants during overnight fighting in Laroo village, Kulgam district (south); unexploded shell from clashes detonated later same day, killing seven civilians and leading to mass protests throughout south Kashmir; separatists held second complete shutdown 22 Oct. Clashes between militants and police left two alleged Lashkar-e-Tayyaba (LeT) militants, one civilian and one policeman dead in capital Srinagar 17 Oct.  Army claimed to have killed three militants who were trying to cross Line of Control (LoC, dividing Pakistan and Indian-administered Kashmir) in Baramulla district (north west) 18 Oct. Security forces 25 Oct claimed to have killed four militants in clash in Anantnag district (south) and two in Baramulla district (west). Tensions between Pakistan and India remained high following India’s late Sept cancellation of bilateral meeting on sidelines of UN General Assembly; Pakistani PM Khan 21 Oct condemned “cycle of killings of innocent Kashmiris” by Indian security forces; Indian govt said Pakistan should “address its own issues”.

September 2018

Asia

Kashmir

In Indian-administered Kashmir, militants continued targeting policemen with four killed by suspected militants 17-20 Sept in Jammu and Kashmir. Indian security forces 27 Sept shot dead one civilian reportedly in crossfire during gunfight with alleged militants in Qamarwari area of Srinagar, leading to protests against Indian rule across region. New Jammu and Kashmir governor Satya Pal Malik 12 Sept requested Supreme Court defer controversial legal challenge to Article 35-A of constitution, which provides special rights and privileges to Jammu and Kashmir’s permanent residents; court deferred hearing. Malik 2 Sept met visiting Defence Minister Sitharaman and army chief Bipin Rawat for talks on security and governance issues, at same time as search operations were ongoing against suspected militants including in Pulwana district. India and U.S. 6 Sept released joint statement calling on Pakistan to ensure its territory is “not used to launch attacks”; Pakistan’s foreign ministry protested. Pakistani military claimed Pakistani civilians killed in firing across Line of Control (LoC, dividing Pakistan and Indian-administered Kashmir) 4 Sept and 10 Sept. Leader of Pakistan-administered Kashmir Farooq Haider Khan 30 Sept accused Indian troops of shooting at his helicopter while it flew close to LoC; Indian army said helicopter had violated Indian airspace, which Pakistan denied. Pakistan’s Foreign Ministry 20 Sept confirmed PM Khan wrote to Indian counterpart Modi 14 Sept calling for resumption of bilateral dialogue on outstanding issues, including disputes over Kashmir and terrorism, and proposed FMs meet during late Sept UN General Assembly; India 20 Sept agreed to talks but cancelled next day; Indian foreign ministry said meeting was called off after “brutal” killing of security personnel by Pakistan-based entities and for issuing postage stamps of Kashmir rebel commander killed in 2016. Indian ambassador to Pakistan 7 Sept expressed optimism about relations under new govt but cautioned “terrorism is a deal breaker”. Tensions also remained over sharing of river waters; Pakistan late Aug reiterated objection to two Indian hydropower projects on Chenab River it claims violates 1960 Indus Water Treaty in bilateral meeting in Lahore. Indian army chief Rawat 24 Sept said India should carry out another “surgical strike” against “terror launch pads” in Pakistan; in 2016 India claimed, and Pakistan denied, that such strikes had taken place.

August 2018

Asia

Kashmir

Clashes across Line of Control (LoC) and militant attacks continued, as did separatist demonstrations, prompted by perceived attempt to change demography of region. Indian troops 18 Aug reportedly killed Pakistani villager in firing across Line of Control (LoC); Pakistan’s Foreign Ministry summoned Indian diplomat to lodge protest in what it called “unprovoked firing”. Indian army 7 Aug claimed four Indian soldiers and two militants killed in gunfight during infiltration attempt by militants across LoC. Militants 22 Aug reportedly killed three policemen and one politician in three separate attacks in Pulwama (west) and Kulgam (south) districts. Separatists 5-6 Aug held strikes and demonstrations throughout Kashmir to protest legal challenge in Supreme Court to Article 35-A of constitution, which provides special rights and privileges to Jammu and Kashmir’s permanent residents and bars non-residents from acquiring immovable property in state; separatists claim challenge is attempt to change disputed region’s demography and convert its majority Muslim population into a minority; held further strikes 27 Aug in which they clashed with security forces in capital Srinagar and Anantang district (south), and again 30-31 Aug ahead of court hearing on Article 35-A. Militants 30-31 Aug reportedly kidnapped at least twelve relatives of police in south Kashmir, allegedly in response to arrest of son of Hizbul Mujahideen chief. Protesters and security forces clashed in Srinagar 21 Aug during demonstrations against Indian rule. New Pakistani PM Khan 21 Aug tweeted Pakistan and India must have dialogue and “resolve their conflicts including Kashmir”.

July 2018

Asia

Kashmir

Fall of Kashmir’s three-year-old coalition govt and New Delhi’s imposition of “governor’s rule” direct control in June continued to fuel unrest. In Hawoora Mishipora village, Kulgam district (west), paramilitary forces 7 July killed three protesters when clashes erupted after demonstrators, protesting alleged army beatings of villagers earlier that day, threw rocks at army patrol; govt temporarily suspended mobile services to prevent organisation of further protests. Separatists 7-8 July held strikes in south Kashmir, closing shops, schools and businesses. Army 11 July fired on youths throwing stones at patrol in Trehgam, Kupwara district (north west), killing one. Militants abducted and killed two policemen during month, in Shopian (west) district 6 July and in Kulgam 20 July; security forces 22 July claimed to have killed three men responsible for second attack, one allegedly from Lashkar-e-Tayyaba (LeT) and others from Hizbul Mujahideen, in operation in Kulgam. Suspected LeT militant killed in clashes with security forces in Handwara, Kupwara district 20 July. Security forces 25 July claimed to have killed two LeT militants in gunfight in Anantnag (south).

June 2018

Asia

Kashmir

Clashes continued between Pakistani and Indian militaries across Line of Control (LoC) despite late May ceasefire agreement, with cross-LoC firing reportedly killing two Indian Border Security Force (BSF) soldiers and injuring seven civilians 3 June. Firing across Working Boundary also killed two women and wounded over twenty in Pakistan’s Sialkot district same day. At least four BSF soldiers killed in cross-LoC firing in Samba district 13 June; Pakistan denied involvement, blamed India for firing first. Unrest continued in Indian-administered Jammu and Kashmir, with five civilians, nine security personnel and over twenty alleged militants reportedly killed in clashes during Ramadan despite Indian central and state govts’ decision to observe ceasefire for holy month, which ended 14 June. Military vehicle 1 June crushed and killed protester in Srinagar; security forces fired tear gas and bullets to disperse mourners next day. Three gunmen 14 June killed prominent journalist and newspaper Editor Shujaat Bukhari in Srinagar, along with two bodyguards; police 28 June accused Lashkar-e-Tayyaba (LeT) militants of carrying out attack. Police claimed to have killed two militants in Bandipora 18 June and three Jaish-e-Mohammed militants in Tral 19 June. Police 22 June reported four militants, one policeman and one civilian killed in clashes in Anantnag district in south Kashmir. Security forces 29 June claimed to have killed militant in Kupwara district. Ruling Bharatiya Janata Party 19 June withdrew from People’s Democratic Party (PDP)-led coalition govt in Kashmir, forcing resignation of PDP Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti; govt 20 June imposed “governor’s rule” (New Delhi’s direct control). UN Commission on Human Rights 14 June released its first report on alleged rights violations and abuses on both sides of LoC in Kashmir, urged establishment of UN commission of inquiry to investigate alleged human rights violations July 2016-April 2018 and criticised controversial Public Safety Act enacted in 1978.

May 2018

Asia

Kashmir

Pakistan’s and India’s general directors of military operations 29 May agreed to restore ceasefire after speaking over hotline; move follows continued Cross-Line of Control (LoC) firing by Pakistani and Indian militaries since late April, which came despite protests by Pakistani foreign ministry in April and military chiefs speaking by hotline 29 April. At least four Pakistani civilians, four Indian civilians and one Indian soldier reportedly killed in cross-LoC fighting 17-18 May, with Pakistani officials reporting that three of the victims were children; seven killed 23 May – five civilians on Indian side, one civilian and one soldier on Pakistani side – on sixth consecutive day of cross-border shelling. Pakistan 22 May raised Kashmir issue at UN Security Council. Unrest continued in Indian-administered Kashmir. Indian police 5 May claimed to have killed three separatist militants in Srinagar, sparking protests in which one civilian was killed by police vehicle. Security forces 6 May killed five alleged Hizbul Mujahideen militants, including commander Saddam Padder, in Shopian district, provoking another wave of protests; police fired on hundreds of stone-throwing demonstrators, killing five; another died later from injuries 8 May, sparking fresh clashes. India 16 May announced suspension of military operations for month of Ramadan, reserving right to retaliate, however clashes continued. Army 26 May killed five suspected militants during infiltration attempts across LoC. Separatist groups 19 May organised strikes in Srinagar to protest visit by Indian PM Modi; shops shut while govt cut mobile services, closed schools and universities, and instigated partial curfew. Modi inaugurated Kishanganga hydropower project in Gurez during visit; Pakistan claims project violates 1960 Indus Water Treaty.

April 2018

Asia

Kashmir

At least twenty killed in clashes between alleged separatist militants and security forces south of Srinagar 1 April. Fatalities included thirteen suspected militants and three Indian soldiers; three civilians killed later same day when police fired on thousands of stone-throwing demonstrators protesting killings. Schools, colleges and businesses went on strike in protest; authorities imposed security restrictions and deployed additional troops and barricades, suspended cell phone and internet services, shutting down most of state. Four civilians killed in Khudwani village in Kulgam district 11 April when security forces fired on protesters throwing stones in attempt to stop operation against suspected militants. Gunfight in southern Tral area 24 April resulted in two soldiers and four suspected militants killed; Tral residents responded with protests. One civilian and two suspected rebels reported killed in clash between Indian troops and rebels in southern Kashmir 30 April. Tensions also increased over case of rape and murder of eight-year-old Muslim girl held captive in Jan in Hindu temple in Kathua district in south of Jammu and Kashmir, with brutality of crime sparking protests across India. Police filed charges 9 April against eight Muslim men; case assumed communal dimension amid suspicions girl was targeted because of her ethnicity and religion, while two ministers from ruling Bharatiya Janata party were forced to resign for joining Hindu nationalist-organised rally in support of the accused. Authorities 19 April closed several colleges and schools in state to thwart student protests demanding justice. Court resumed hearing case 28 April. Pakistan and India 30 March agreed to address complaints of harassment of diplomats in accordance with bilaterally agreed 1992 “code of conduct” on treatment of diplomatic and consular staff; came after Pakistan temporarily recalled its high commissioner to New Delhi for consultations following alleged spike in harassment of Pakistani diplomats and their families, and Indian complaints about treatment of its diplomats in Islamabad.

March 2018

Asia

Kashmir

Pakistan 6 March claimed to have shot down Indian spy drone which it said was crossing Line of Control (LoC); next day Pakistani and Indian border security forces shelling killed five people on both sides of LoC. Indian security forces reported several clashes with militants in Indian-administered Jammu and Kashmir, including: 12 March clash in Anantnag district in which India said its forces killed three militants; 16 March gunfight in Srinagar in which two suspected militants were killed; clashes 20-22 March during cordon-and-search operation in Kupwara district, during which five security personnel and five reported Lashkar-e-Tayyaba (LeT) militants were killed; and clash 25 March in Budgam district in which one LeT militant was killed and a girl injured. Pakistan 10 March lodged formal protest with India over alleged harassment of New Delhi-based Pakistani diplomats and their families in series of incidents which began 7 March, and accused Indian authorities of complicity; Pakistan 15 March said it had recalled its high commissioner to India for “consultations” over alleged harassment of Pakistani diplomats and families by Indian security agencies, returning 22 March. Amid broader push against terror financing and money laundering by Pakistan, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa authorities mid-March seized assets and closed properties belonging to Jamaat-ud-Dawa (charity front of radical group anti-India Lashkar-e-Tayyaba) (see Pakistan).

February 2018

Asia

Kashmir

Militants and Indian security forces clashed throughout month, including 10 Feb militant attack on army base in Indian-administered Kashmir killing at least five soldiers and one civilian. India 12 Feb claimed it had evidence attack was carried out by Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohammad and threatened retaliation against Pakistan; Pakistan 13 Feb said “any Indian aggression” would be met with “equal and proportionate response”. Gunmen 13 Feb attacked police base in Srinagar (south); gunmen and one soldier killed in ensuing standoff. Suspected militants 25 Feb killed two policemen in separate incidents in Indian-administered Kashmir. India and Pakistan traded fire across Line of Control (LoC) on several occasions, including 19 Feb clash which Pakistan said killed one Pakistani civilian and two Indian soldiers. Pakistani PM Abbasi 21 Jan confirmed his govt plans to take control of anti-India group Jamaat-ud-Dawa’s (JuD, formerly Lashkar-e-Tayyaba) charity operations; Pakistani President Hussain 9 Feb approved expansion of banned terrorist groups list to include groups sanctioned by UN Security Council, including JuD and its Falah-i-Insaniat Foundation; Pakistani govt mid-Feb said it had seized hundreds of JuD properties and madrasas (see Pakistan).

January 2018

Asia

Kashmir

Periodic exchanges of fire across international border and Line of Control (LoC) between India and Pakistan occurred throughout month, increasing in frequency mid-to-late Jan after Pakistan 15 Jan accused India of killing four of its soldiers and said it had killed three Indian soldiers in retaliation. Bomb placed by suspected militants 6 Jan killed four policemen in Srinagar. Indian security forces and militants clashed throughout month, including on 15 Jan, when Indian forces said they killed five Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) militants attempting to infiltrate across LoC; during 24 Jan clash, police killed two suspected militants and seventeen-year-old civilian man in Indian-administered Jammu. Security forces 27 Jan fired on anti-India protestors in Shopian district of Indian-administered Kashmir, killing two and triggering further protests. Tensions continued over detained alleged Indian spy Kulbuhshan Jhadav following 25 Dec meeting between Jhadav and his wife and mother in Islamabad, after which Pakistan released video statement by Jhadav reiterating confession that he had been working for Indian intelligence; India said Jhadav’s statement was made under duress, repeated demands for consular access to Jhadav.

December 2017

Asia

Kashmir

Pakistan 7 Dec accused Indian forces of firing on funeral in Poonch district in Pakistani-administered Kashmir, killing two people and injuring one; military claimed to have killed Indian soldier in retaliatory fire. Several Indian and Pakistani soldiers reported killed by firing across Line of Control including on 23 and 25 Dec. Indian army 16 Dec allegedly killed taxi driver during night ambush against reported militants, triggering protests next day in Indian-administered Kashmir’s Kupwara district; army said civilian was killed in crossfire. Police 19 Dec killed two suspected militants in Shopian district of Indian-administered Kashmir; clash sparked anti-India protests, during which one person was killed. Security forces reported they killed Noor Mohammad Tantray, senior member of Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) militant group 26 Dec, prompting further violent protests. Govt released three separatist leaders from jail 25-27 Dec. Five Indian security forces and three suspected militants reported killed in raid on base in Lethpora, south of Srinagar (southern Kashmir) 31 Dec. Reports of over 200 militants, around 80 security forces and at least 57 civilians killed in 2017 make it deadliest year since 2010. Pakistan 8 Dec said it would allow meeting between detained alleged Indian spy Kulbuhshan Jhadav and his wife and mother in Islamabad 25 Dec. Raza Mahmood, social activist working on India-Pakistan civil society dialogues, disappeared from his home in Lahore 2 Dec, allegedly at hands of military’s intelligence agencies. India expressed outrage over Pakistan court’s late Nov release from house arrest of Lashkar-e-Tayyaba (LeT)/Jama'at-ud-Da'wah chief Hafez Saeed, allegedly involved in 2008 Mumbai terror attacks.

November 2017

Asia

Kashmir

India reported numerous clashes with militants throughout month, including: 5 Nov Indian military reportedly killed two militants trying to infiltrate across Line of Control (LoC); 17 Nov clash killed one Indian policeman and one reported Lashkar-e-Tayyaba (LeT) militant; 18 Nov military operation reportedly killed six LeT militants; 21 Nov Indian military reportedly killed three LeT militants; 22 Nov clash killed one army trooper and one militant. Five suspected militants and three civilians reported killed in two separate clashes 30 Nov; at least three protestors injured in clashes with security forces in subsequent protests. Indian police 7 Nov also killed Talha Rasheed in Pulwama district, nephew of Jaish-e-Mohammad chief Masood Azhar. Sporadic firing continued across LoC; both sides alleged ceasefire violations. Pakistan army 27 Oct claimed it shot down Indian drone on LoC; Pakistan govt same day protested sale of U.S. unarmed surveillance drones to India agreed in June. Pakistan PM Abbasi 10 Nov approved funds to build bunkers for civilians living alongside LoC; India also began building civilian bunkers. Indian and Pakistani officials early Nov agreed to resume travel and trade across Line of Control (LoC) after nearly four months. Pakistan Punjab Rangers delegation 10 Nov concluded biannual talks with India’s Border Security Force in New Delhi; both sides agreed on “need to revive the spirit of the 2003 ceasefire agreement”.

October 2017

Asia

Kashmir

Tensions within Indian-administered Kashmir remained high as protestors demonstrated around Srinagar and Kashmir Valley against rising incidence of “braid-chopping” assaults on women by attackers who cut their hair off. Police reported over 100 such attacks in Sept; protesters accused security agencies of being behind attacks. Police 6 Oct imposed restrictions to stop protests and detained separatist leaders, but protestors took to streets and some reportedly attacked suspected “braid choppers”; state govt initiated investigation into attacks. As protests spread, state govt 12-13 Oct closed all educational institutions in Kashmir Valley; strikes and protests 13 Oct across state resulted in violent clashes between demonstrators and police. During debate at university in London, former Indian intelligence chief Amarjit Singh Dulat 6 Oct acknowledged India had created a “mess” in Indian-administered Jammu and Kashmir since mid-2016. Indian army 2 Oct said it killed five militants attempting to cross Line of Control (LoC) into Indian-administered territory. One policeman killed after militants infiltrated camp at Srinagar airport disguised as soldiers 3 Oct; three militants also reportedly killed in attack, which was claimed by Jaish-e-Mohammad. Intermittent firing across LoC continued, including incident Pakistani army 24 Oct said killed two people; Indian army said Pakistani artillery 21 Oct killed army porter and injured girl, and 12 Oct reported deaths of army jawan and porter; exchange of fire on 18 Oct resulted in at least eight people wounded. Pakistan protested reported killing of six civilians in firing on 22 Sept.

September 2017

Asia

Kashmir

Sporadic exchanges of fire between Indian and Pakistani forces continued across Line of Control (LoC), with military and civilian casualties on both sides. One Indian border guard dead after 15 Sept skirmish in Ranbir Singh Pura sector; one soldier killed and three wounded in 20 Sept firefight in Keran sector. Pakistani police 2 Sept reported five-year-old girl killed by Indian firing from across LoC in Poonch district, Pakistani-administered Jammu and Kashmir. Indian police reported women killed by Pakistani shelling 14 Sept. In Arnia sub-sector of Indian-administered Jammu and Kashmir (J&K), India reported Pakistani shelling 15 Sept killed Indian soldier; another exchange of fire 17 Sept left one woman dead and five civilians injured. Pakistan reported Indian firing killed two civilians and one soldier in Poonch district 29 Sept. Suspected militants 1 Sept ambushed bus carrying security personnel in Srinagar, J&K, injuring five policemen. Security forces killed two Hizbul Mujahidin militants including divisional commander in Sopore town 4 Sept, and Pakistan-based Lashkar-e-Tayyaba (LeT) leader Abu Ismail and fellow militant in 14 Sept operation in Srinagar. Suspected militants 21 Sept killed two civilians and injured dozens, including two policemen, in attempt to kill J&K Minister for Public Works Naeem Akhtar in Srinagar. In ongoing protests in India-administered Kashmir, clashes erupted between anti-India protesters and security forces after Eid al-Azha prayers 2 Sept in Srinagar, Anantnag and Sopore, no reported casualties. Islamabad 14 Sept warned that arms deals between India and U.S. would “accentuate military imbalances in the region and undermine strategic stability”, and “embolden India to adopt aggressive military doctrines”.

August 2017

Asia

Kashmir

Eight Indian police killed in clash with militants who stormed their camp in Pulwama, southern Kashmir 26 Aug; three militants also reported killed; Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohammad claimed responsibility in reportedly worst attack on security facility since Sept 2016 Uri attack. India reported it believes 79 militants crossed Line of Control (LoC) into Indian Kashmir in July; military reported it killed five militants trying to enter 7 Aug, police reported two soldiers and three militants killed in clash in south 12-13 Aug. Firing across LoC continued including 26 Aug incident in which Indian force said it killed three Pakistani rangers; Pakistani police 28 Aug reported three civilians killed by Indian troops firing across LoC in Haveli district; in 21 July exchange, local officials reported child killed and three family members injured in Pakistan-administered Azad Jammu and Kashmir’s (AJK) Jhelum Valley, and Pakistan military claimed it killed three Indian soldiers in retaliation. Following 3 Aug meeting at Chakothi-Uri crossing, Indian and Pakistani officials agreed to resume cross-LoC trade 8 Aug; trade finally resumed 17 Aug. Tensions in India-administered Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) and clashes between demonstrators and security forces continued. Security forces 1 Aug killed top Lashkar-e-Tayyaba commander in Pulwama district, triggering protests and prompting authorities to suspend internet and train services. At least one protestor killed and dozens injured as police responded with force. J&K capital Srinagar and most parts of valley virtually shut down 3 Aug as both factions of separatist Hurriyat Conference and Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front called for protests against alleged targeting of civilians by security forces. U.S. state and treasury departments 16 Aug formally sanctioned Kashmiri militant group Hizb-ul Mujahidin, barring U.S. citizens and residents from dealing with group and freezing assets under U.S. jurisdiction. Pakistan said action unjustified; protests took place next day in AJK capital Muzaffarabad in west.

July 2017

Asia

Kashmir

Indian security forces clashed with demonstrators marking one-year anniversary 8 July of killing of Kashmiri militant commander Burhan Wani by Indian security forces; protests took place despite heavy security restrictions in place. Officials in Pakistan-administered Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK)’s Poonch district claimed five civilians killed in cross-Line of Control (LOC) firing same day; India claimed two people killed by Pakistani fire. Pakistani military officials 9 July claimed to have killed four Indian soldiers in retaliatory firing. Seven Hindu pilgrims reported killed in crossfire during militant attack in Indian-administered Kashmir 10 July. Pakistani officials announced suspension of Poonch-Rawalkot cross-LOC bus service. Pakistani military spokesman 16 July accused India of violating LOC ceasefire 580 times so far in 2017, compared to 382 in 2016. Four Pakistani soldiers reported killed same day in Indian army cross-border firing; India next day reported soldier and civilian killed by Pakistani firing. India’s counter-terrorism agency 24 July arrested seven members of separatist umbrella group All Parties Hurriyat Conference charged with receiving fund from Pakistani militant groups to prepare attacks. Al-Qaeda 27 July announced Kashmiri militant leader Zakir Musa as head of newly-created cell in Kashmir, Ansar Ghawzat-ul-Hind. Pakistani foreign advisor Sartaj Aziz 3 July told Kashmiri journalists Pakistan not obliged to follow recent U.S. sanctions on Kashmiri militant Hizbul Mujahideen leader Syed Salahuddin. India’s foreign ministry 13 July rebuffed Chinese offer to mediate with Pakistan, saying any dialogue would be bilateral.

June 2017

Asia

Kashmir

Two civilians reported killed on Pakistani side and one person on Indian side in shelling across Line of Control (LoC) 1 June. Pakistani military 3 June announced it had killed five Indian soldiers in response to “unprovoked ceasefire violation” along LoC; India denied military casualties, said one woman injured by Pakistani shelling. Indian Home Minister Rajnath Singh 4 June said Indian army had “free hand” to respond to “any attempt by Pakistani troops to disturb peace”. Indian and Pakistani military chiefs 5 June spoke over hotline following spike in cross-LoC clashes. Four alleged militants killed 5 June during attack on Indian Central Reserve Police Force camp in Indian-administered Kashmir. Indian military same day warned it will take “appropriate retaliatory actions” if Pakistani military “continues to abet infiltrations and cause trans-LoC firings”. Shortly before 26 June meeting between Indian and U.S. presidents, U.S. put Syed Salahuddin, Kashmir-based head of Hizbul Mujahideen militant group, on its global terror list; Pakistan said militants fighting India in Kashmir engaged in legitimate struggle for freedom. Tensions in Indian-administered Kashmir continued. Security forces 27 May killed Hizbul Mujahideen commander Sabzar Ahmad Bhat and several other alleged militants, provoking major demonstrations, clashes between security personnel and protesters, and re-imposition of curfew. Two police killed 15 June in separate shootings by suspected militants in Srinagar and southern Kulgam area. Security forces 16 June cordoned off southern Arwani village; two alleged militants attempted to shoot their way out; fighting prompted thousands in village and neighbouring areas to defy security lockdown, throwing stones at soldiers; at least two civilians reported killed. Five Indian police killed 16 June in southern Achabal area when vehicle was ambushed; officials blamed Pakistan-based Lashkar-e-Tayyaba. Policeman reportedly beaten to death by crowd outside mosque in Srinagar 23 June.

May 2017

Asia

Kashmir

Exchanges of fire along the Line of Control (LoC) left at least six civilians dead 11 and 13 May. India 1 May accused Pakistani soldiers of killing and mutilating two Indian soldiers as they patrolled LoC, Pakistan denied its forces responsible; Indian vice army chief next day said India would respond at “time and place of our choosing”. Tensions in Indian-administered Kashmir continued: security forces 2 May carried out large-scale anti-militancy operation; in villages of Sug and Tarkwangan, protesters threw stones at security forces. Anti-India protesters and security forces clashed in Srinagar 9 and 12 May, Shopian district 12 May and Pulwama town 15 May. In Kulgam district, militants 6 May killed policeman in ambush, three civilians also dead; suspected militants 7 May killed five police and two civilians as they ambushed bank van carrying cash. Authorities 1 May extended house arrest of Lashkar-e-Tayyaba (LeT) leader and alleged mastermind of 2008 Mumbai attacks Hafiz Saeed. Hizbul Mujahideen head Zakir Musa 13 May quit insurgent group and declared support for al-Qaeda. India 8 May initiated proceedings against Pakistan at International Court of Justice (ICJ), accusing it of violating Vienna Convention by denying consular access to alleged spy Kulbhushan Yadav, currently sentenced to death. ICJ 18 May ordered Pakistan to delay execution until India’s case is examined. Islamabad repeated accusation that India sponsors militant attacks in Balochistan (see Pakistan).

April 2017

Asia

Kashmir

Tensions worsened between Indian security forces and protesters around by-elections in Srinagar 9 April, with nine killed in clashes during month. Protesters 9 April stormed polling stations and threw stones at security forces in Budgam district; eight civilians dead and over 200 injured after security forces opened fire on protesters, prompting calls for further protests. Voter turnout reportedly 7%, lowest in 27 years, 70 polling stations forced to shut down. Polling repeated in 38 polling stations 13 April; reported 2% turnout lowest in Jammu and Kashmir’s history. Authorities postponed polling in Anantnag, scheduled 12 April, to 25 May due to security concerns. Security forces 15 April killed seventeen-year old boy as youths threw stones at convoy in Batamaloo, Srinagar; clashed with students in Pulwama town same day, injuring at least 50. Indian soldiers 13 April reportedly tied civilian to a military vehicle as they patrolled in Budgam district before releasing him; police filed criminal complaint against army; army chief vowed action against perpetrators, but said “relentless operations” against Kashmiri separatists and protesters would continue. Clashes across Line of Control (LoC) continued. In Kupwara district, security forces 10 April killed four suspected militants during gunfight after they attempted to cross LoC into Keran sector from Pakistan-administered Kashmir; killed two Lashkar-e-Tayyaba (LeT) militants in anti-militancy operation in Hayatapora village, Budgam district. At least three Indian soldiers and two militants killed as suspected Jaish-e-Mohammad militants attacked military camp near LoC in Panzgam village, Kupwara district, 27 April. Pakistani military 10 April sentenced Indian naval officer arrested March 2016 to death on charges of espionage and sabotage. India filed formal protest to Pakistani high commissioner claiming defendant not a spy, declaring execution would be considered “premeditated murder”.

March 2017

Asia

Kashmir

Clashes and firing across Line of Control (LoC) continued, both sides accusing other of violating ceasefire. One Indian soldier killed 10 March; Pakistani army 18 March reported Indian fire killed one civilian and injured two children in Kotli district. In Indian-administered Jammu and Kashmir, security operations against alleged insurgents continued to spark protests, including gunfight in Tral town, Pulwama district 5 March in which two suspected insurgents and one policeman were killed. In Padgampora village, Pulwama district, Indian security forces 9 March killed two suspected militants in raid; allegedly used live ammunition during clashes with ensuing protests, killing one boy and injuring three. Police reported three Lashkar-e-Tayyaba (LeT) militants killed in 15 March Kupwara district security operation, one boy injured and one girl killed by stray bullets; subsequent clashes between security forces and protesters left one boy dead, protesters clashed with police in Srinagar next day. Police 29 March killed suspected militant in Budgam district; three civilians died in subsequent clashes with police. Militants 3 March threw grenade at police in Pulwama district, killing one civilian and injuring policeman. Separatist leaders Syed Ali Gilani and Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, both from All Parties Hurriyat Conference political alliance, and Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front leader Muhammad Yasin Malik, urged Kashmiris to boycott early April Indian by-elections in central and S Kashmir and observe shutdown during polling. Police 16 March arrested the three leaders, allegedly to prevent them from holding joint press conference in Srinagar; arrests prompted anti-India protest at press conference venue; Kashmir Editor’s Guild 19 March claimed police assaulted journalists during protest. Indian and Pakistani military leaders spoke on phone 9 March: Pakistani military said it had “strongly rejected Indian concerns over the movement of terrorists along the LoC”, “asked India to look inward”. India and Pakistan resumed talks under 1960 Indus Water Treaty in Lahore 20-21 March, first such meeting since May 2015.

February 2017

Asia

Kashmir

Deadly encounters between security forces and separatist militants continued in Indian-administered Jammu and Kashmir, leaving at least ten alleged militants and nine soldiers dead. Police and security forces 4 Feb killed two suspected members of Hizbul Mujahideen near Sopore in north; claimed operation thwarted major terrorist attack. Gunfight between alleged Hizbul Mujahideen and Lashkar-e-Tayyaba (LeT) militants and security forces in Kulgam district in south 11-12 Feb left four alleged militants, two soldiers and two civilians dead; incident provoked major protests and clashes between demonstrators and security forces same day, one protester reported killed and at least 30 injured. Four Indian soldiers and four alleged militants killed in separate security raids 14 Feb. Alleged militants 23 Feb ambushed army patrol in Shopian, killing three soldiers and injuring five; one civilian killed by stray bullet. Indian army chief Bipin Rawat 17 Feb claimed those who obstruct or do not support anti-militancy operations will be considered “overground workers of terrorists”; remarks triggered violent protests throughout Jammu and Kashmir same day. Pakistani army accused India of violating ceasefire along LoC after three Pakistani soldiers were killed in 13 Feb exchange of fire in Bhimber district in south of Pakistan-administered Kashmir.

January 2017

Asia

Kashmir

India reported almost a dozen foreign and local militants killed by security forces in Jammu and Kashmir since 1 Jan. Three Hizb-ul-Mujahadeen militants killed in 16 Jan gunfight in Awoori, Anantnag district; confrontation sparked clashes between protesters and police while nearby villagers reportedly attempted to disrupt operation; incident reportedly prompted protests across southern Kashmir. Security forces 19 Jan killed operational commander of Lashkar-e Toiba (LeT) in Bandipore, N Jammu and Kashmir. Indian officials 24 Jan reported two LeT militants killed during security operations in Hadoora, N of Srinagar, and one unidentified militant killed near Line of Control (LoC). Clashes reported 20 Jan between police and protesters in Sopore in north during one-day general strike organised by separatists. Unidentified attackers 9 Jan killed three road construction workers in Jourian, Jammu district; motives unknown. Following World Banks’s 12 Dec halting of two arbitration processes between India and Pakistan under Indus Water Treaty (IWT), Indian officials 5 Jan proposed dispute should be resolved bilaterally or through neutral technical expert, rather than full court of arbitration as sought by Islamabad. Pakistan minister for water and power 17 Jan told senate panel India engaging in “posturing”, no immediate threat of it repudiating IWT. India’s new army chief in 3 Jan interview said strikes carried out Sept 2016 across LoC were “messaging” to terrorists, will repeat if militants continue operations on Indian territory; Pakistani counterpart 5 Jan claimed Pakistan armed forces ready to respond to any Indian aggression. Pakistan 6 Jan presented dossier to UNSG Guterres accusing India of involvement in terrorist activities in Karachi, Balochistan, and Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA). Pakistan 9 Jan tested first submarine-launched cruise missile.

December 2016

Asia

Kashmir

Tensions between India and Pakistan remained high as exchanges of fire between their forces along Line of Control (LoC) continued. Incidents included Indian artillery shelling 16 Dec that reportedly hit school bus in Mohra, Kotli district in Pakistan-administered Kashmir, killing driver and wounding several children. Hostile rhetoric between Indian and Pakistani officials continued. Outgoing Pakistan Army Chief Raheel Sharif 29 Nov advised India not to take Pakistan’s “policy of patience for weakness”. Indian Home Minister 11 Dec warned Pakistan would be broken “into ten pieces” if it does not stop cross-border terrorism. World Bank 12 Dec halted two Pakistani and Indian arbitration processes under 1960 Indus Water Treaty; concerned that current tensions could endanger treaty, called on countries to consider bilateral approaches to resolving conflicting interests under treaty. Clashes between security personnel and protesters in Indian-administered Kashmir continued. Two-day gun battle between security forces and suspected Lashkar-e-Tayyiba (LeT) militants in Arwani, south of Srinagar, 7-9 Dec saw two suspected militants killed and triggered anti-India protests; one protester killed and dozens reported wounded in clashes with security forces. Militant killed in clash with security forces in Anantnag district 14 Dec, sparking protests. Physicians for Human Rights NGO issued report 6 Dec accusing Indian police and paramilitary forces of using excessive indiscriminate force against protesters and blocking medical care since start of current protests July 2016. Attacks on Indian troops also continued, including 18 Dec suspected Kashmiri militant attack on convoy in Pampore, killing three soldiers. Indian policeman killed by suspected militants in northern district Kupwara 31 Dec. Indian govt 21 Dec claimed Nov demonetisation initiative has hurt militants’ finances, allegedly spurring them to carry out series of bank robberies; Lashkar-e-Tayyiba and Hizbul Mujahideen denied role in robbery in Pulwarna, S Kashmir 15 Dec.

November 2016

Asia

Kashmir

India and Pakistan continued exchanges of fire across Line of Control (LoC) throughout month, leaving scores dead and injured, mainly combatants. Indian artillery shelling 23 Nov hit passenger bus traveling toward Muzaffarabad in Pakistan-administered Kashmir, killing at least nine civilians. Pakistan PM Sharif condemned India for “naked aggression”; Indian military expressed “grief” over civilian casualties, but insisted shelling was “retaliatory” and initiated by Pakistan. Armed militants reportedly disguised as police 29 Nov attacked Indian army unit in Nagrota, Indian-administered Jammu and Kashmir, killing seven soldiers. Pakistan-administered Kashmir PM Raja Farooq Haider 15 Nov said 8,000 people had been evacuated from villages near border due to escalating violence after seven soldiers were killed 14 Nov in cross-border exchange of fire. India reportedly relocated some 10,000 civilians from border regions in Oct. Clashes between Indian security personnel and protesters in Indian-administered Kashmir continued, including 2 Nov clashes in Soura, on Srinagar’s outskirts, which injured over 100, mainly civilians. Fresh protests broke out 14 Nov in Srinagar and elsewhere throughout Kashmir after young boy died of injuries sustained from being hit by armoured Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) vehicle during previous week’s clashes. Kashmiri separatist groups 16 Nov announced two-day relaxation of shutdown 19-20 Nov, first formal pause in shutdown since wave of protests began in July. Following 27 Oct expulsion of Pakistani diplomat from India, mutual accusations of espionage and withdrawal of diplomats continued. Pakistan 2 Nov withdrew six officials from Delhi; 3 Nov accused eight Indian diplomats of espionage, charging them with “coordinating terrorist and subversive activities in Pakistan under the garb of diplomatic assignments” and supporting attacks by Pakistani Taliban and Baloch separatist groups. Pakistan navy 18 Nov claimed it had blocked Indian submarine from entering Pakistan’s territorial waters two days earlier; Indian navy denied claim. Pakistan foreign affairs advisor Sartaj Aziz 15 Nov said he would attend Heart of Asia regional conference on Afghanistan in India in Dec.

October 2016

Asia

Kashmir

Tensions between Pakistan and India remained high as internal friction persisted in Indian-administered Kashmir, while more than twenty civilians were reportedly killed on both sides in series of clashes across Line of Control (LoC) late month, including six Pakistanis reported killed 31 Oct, seven Indians 1 Nov. Indian troops 8 Oct clashed with thousands of demonstrators in Srinagar after protests broke out in response to death of twelve-year old boy shot with pellet guns by security forces 7 Oct. Security forces re-imposed curfew in Srinagar in attempt to contain protests. Police 23 Oct said some 7,000 people, mostly youths, arrested, over 400 charged under Public Safety Act (PSA) since first wave of protests broke out 8 July, representing largest crackdown in Kashmir in over two decades, according to Indian national press. Speaking at 16 Oct BRICS conference, Indian PM Modi referred indirectly to Pakistan as “mother-ship of terrorism”; China responded praising Pakistan’s “huge efforts and great sacrifices in fighting terrorism”. China 1 Oct extended three-month “technical hold” blocking Indian request for UN sanctions against Masood Azhar, chief of banned Jaish-e-Mohammad allegedly responsible for Jan Pathankot air base attack. Following late Sept tensions surrounding Indus Water Treaty (IWT), Islamabad 20 Oct said it is closely monitoring India’s compliance. Indian FM 27 Oct announced expulsion of Pakistani diplomat Mehmood Akhtar for suspected “espionage”; Pakistan same day expelled Indian diplomat. Small clashes between alleged militants and security forces continued, including: six gunmen 2 Oct attacked Indian army camps in Baramulla district, killing one officer; Indian officials 6 Oct said military had killed three militants attempting attack on army base in Kupwara district; one political party worker and two suspected militants killed 12 Oct in separate incidents in Kupwara.

September 2016

Asia

Kashmir

Relations between India and Pakistan reached lowest point since 2011 after four armed militants 18 Sept stormed army base in Indian-administered Kashmir’s Uri region, killing eighteen and injuring around 30. New Delhi blamed Pakistan-based militant group Jaish-e-Mohammad for attack; Indian home minister 18 Sept accused Pakistan of complicity in transnational terrorism, called it “terrorist state”. Indian PM Modi 19 Sept called for “clear evidence of Pakistan’s complicity” in Uri attack to be presented in international forums including UNGA. Pakistan’s army chief same day said “armed forces of Pakistan are fully prepared to respond to entire spectrum of direct and indirect threat” from India. Tensions over India’s crackdown on protesters in Indian-administered Kashmir continued to build: Pakistan permanent representative to UN Human Rights Council 14 Sept called for independent UN investigation into situation in Kashmir; India responded criticising Pakistan for human rights violations in Balochistan. India 28 Sept said it would not attend South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation summit, major regional initiative being hosted by Pakistan in Nov; Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Bhutan joined India in boycotting summit. India decided to suspend Indus Waters Commission talks until “Pakistan-sponsored terrorism” ended, with PM Modi 26 Sept saying “blood and water cannot flow together”; Pakistan Foreign Affairs Adviser Sartaj Aziz said Pakistan would consider it an “act of war” if India revoked 1960 Indus Waters Treaty. India 29 Sept announced it had carried out “surgical strikes” against suspected militants along LoC; Pakistan denied strikes on its territory, said two of its soldiers had been killed by “unprovoked” Indian fire, also reported it had detained an Indian soldier; villagers reportedly evacuating on Indian side. Indian Army 20 Sept claimed to have killed ten suspected militants allegedly trying to infiltrate Uri from across LoC. Indian army 10 Sept reportedly entered most volatile regions of Kashmir, including Pulwama, Shopian, Kulgam and Anantnag, for first time since 2014. Security forces 12 Sept claimed to have killed seven youths in three separate gunfights during two-day operation in North Kashmir’s Kupwara district.

August 2016

Asia

Kashmir

Tensions between India and Pakistan rose as clashes between Indian police and protesters continued in wake of Indian security forces’ 8 July killing of Hizbul Mujahideen leader Burhan Wani. At least five people reportedly killed 15 Aug in clash with police following India Independence day protests in Srinagar. Alleged militants 17 Aug killed one police officer, two soldiers following police ambush. Fresh protests erupted in several parts of Kashmir including Srinagar after Indian authorities 29 Aug lifted 52-day curfew in most of Kashmir; parts of Srinagar remained under lockdown. Security forces 31 Aug reportedly fired at protesters in Nadihal village, killing one and bringing civilian death toll to at least 69 since protests broke out in July. Protesters 3 Aug staged sit-in in Pakistan-administered Kashmir after Pakistan security forces blocked aid convoy of Jamaat-ud-Dawa (JD – the renamed Laskhkar-e-Tayyaba, LeT) activists reportedly attempting to cross LoC with food and medical supplies. Pakistani Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan 4 Aug accused India of “open terrorism” in Kashmir at South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) ministerial summit in Islamabad. Indian PM Modi 12 Aug accused Pakistan of encouraging “cross-border terrorism” in Kashmir. Pakistan foreign secretary 15 Aug extended formal invitation to New Delhi for dialogue on Kashmir, Indian govt said talks should focus on cross-border terrorism; rejected Pakistan’s “self-serving allegations” of misconduct in Kashmir. UN human rights chief 17 Aug released statement requesting “full and unhindered access” to population affected by violence in Pakistan and India-administered Kashmir in order to investigate alleged human rights violations.

July 2016

Asia

Kashmir

Indian security forces’ killing of Hizbul Mujahideen militant Burhan Wani and state’s violent crackdown on subsequent protests sparked fresh crisis in India-administered Kashmir. Wani and two other Hizbul Mujahideen members killed in southern Indian-administered Kashmir 8 July prompting scores of major protests throughout Jammu and Kashmir throughout month, with at least 49 civilians killed and over 5,000 reportedly injured in clashes with security forces. Indian authorities imposed immediate round-the-clock curfew; 15 July imposed information “blackout”, including printing ban and limited cell phone and internet coverage. Indian govt 17 July sent 2,000 additional troops. Authorities 26 July briefly lifted curfew in most of Srinagar and parts of N Kashmir, but re-imposed 27 July as unrest continued, including strikes and street protests. Pakistan’s foreign office and army chief General Raheel Sharif condemned killing of Wani and protesters. Hizb-ul-Mujahadeen leader Syed Salahuddin 13 July led rally in Pakistan-administered Kashmir capital Muzaffarabad, accusing India of genocide of Kashmiris. Pakistan senate 18 July passed unanimous resolution protesting violence in Indian-administered Kashmir; Indian home minister blamed Pakistan for orchestrating bloodshed.

June 2016

Asia

Kashmir

Indian National Investigation Agency Director General Sharad Kumar 2 June reported that inquiry into Jan 2016 Pathankot air base attacks had produced strong evidence implicating Jaish-e-Mohammed leader Masood Azhar and his brother Rauf; found no evidence to suggest direct involvement of Pakistani govt or intelligence agencies. Violent clashes between militants and Indian armed forces continued: suspected militants 25 June killed eight police, injured twenty in attack on convoy outside Srinagar; Lashkar-e-Tayyiba (LeT) claimed responsibility. At least fifteen soldiers and rebels reportedly killed in five other clashes during month. Heavy gunfire broke out 20 June between security forces and militants following reported arrest of top LeT commander Abu Ukasha in Kupwara district. At least 30 people reportedly injured in clashes with police during protests in Srinagar against Indian govt’s new industrial policy.

May 2016

Asia

Kashmir

Violence increased late month: police reported they killed leader and another member of Pakistani militant group Jaish-e-Mohammed in Srinagar 23 May. Three police shot dead in Srinagar 24 May; one policeman and one civilian killed in separate attacks by gunmen 25 May; one soldier and six suspected militants killed in two separate encounters in Baramulla district 27 May, one involving gun battle with separatists allegedly trying to cross Line of Control.

April 2016

Asia

Kashmir

Tensions between India and Pakistan increased following Pakistan’s 24 March arrest of Indian national accused of being spy for Indian intelligence Research and Analysis Wing (RAW). Balochistan’s Frontier Corps commander 2 April said spy’s activities demonstrated Balochistan’s armed movement was “Indian state sponsored”. Pakistan’s High Commissioner in New Delhi 7 April said India-Pakistan dialogue process suspended. Indian and Pakistani FMs met on sidelines of Heart of Asia regional summit in New Delhi 26 April, first meeting between the two since Jan militant attack on Indian airbase in Pathankot in Punjab near Pakistani border; no significant progress reported. Indian National Investigation Agency director general 1 April said Pakistan’s Joint Investigation Team, which arrived in India late March to investigate Pathankot attack, was given “concrete evidence” of Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohammed involvement in attack. Pakistan military 9 April said Indian forces “resorted to heavy unprovoked firing and shelling” across Line of Control. Clashes between Indian soldiers and insurgents continued. Four killed in violent clashes between protestors and Indian police in areas of Indian-administered Kashmir including Handwara and Srinagar 12 April, following allegations that Indian soldier molested girl; authorities imposed curfews. Anti-India protests broke out 7 April in Shopian after two suspected insurgents killed in gun battle.

March 2016

Asia

Kashmir

Pakistani investigation team 27 March arrived in India to investigate 2 Jan militant attack on Indian airbase in Pathankot in Punjab near Pakistani border killing seven Indian soldiers; followed Indian FM’s 17 March announcement during South Asian Associated for Regional Cooperation Council of Ministers meeting of agreement with Pakistan Foreign Affairs Advisor Sartaj Aziz that Pakistan would send investigation team. Indian defence minister 1 March accused Pakistani non-state actors of responsibility for attack, said “no non-state actor from there [Pakistan] can function smoothly without the state’s support”. Pakistan interior minister 8 March confirmed his govt had informed Indian authorities of ten suspicious men crossing border from Pakistan 3 March; Indian security forces reportedly killed three of them. Pakistan officials summoned Indian ambassador 25 March protesting illegal entry of suspected Indian spy captured in Baluchistan province 24 March. Clashes between Indian soldiers and rebels continued including two suspected rebels killed in gun battle NW of Srinagar 18 March. Indian army 3 March said three suspected Kashmiri rebels killed during gun battle in Tral; hundreds of residents shouting pro-freedom slogans attempted to reach site of clash, police fired tear gas to disperse them.

February 2016

Asia

Kashmir

Indian home minister 3 Feb said govt would continue working with Pakistani investigation into 2 Jan attack on Pathankot air base in Indian Punjab; said Islamabad had to show “sincerity and take action against terrorists operating from its soil”. Anonymous security official 8 Feb reportedly said Pakistani investigation team found “nothing dubious” in homes, madrasas and phone records of Jaish-e-Mohammad members blamed by India for attack. Pakistan’s National Assembly Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs 1 Feb urged govt to avoid “encouraging” support to Kashmiri militants. Addressing Pakistan-administered Kashmir parliament 5 Feb, PM Sharif said solution “lies in dialogue” with India. Leader of militant group Lashkar-e-Tayyaba/Jamaat-ud-Dawa warned Sharif not to “betray the Kashmiri cause”. Nine reported killed including civilians in three-day gun battle between militants and security forces in India-controlled region after gunmen 21 Feb attacked bus carrying police. Five suspected militants and two soldiers killed during gun battle 13 Feb in Kupwara near Line of Control. One killed during clashes between Pakistan People’s Party and Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz) activists 13 Feb in Kotli district of Pakistan-administered Azad Jammu and Kashmir. Authorities imposed curfew in Indian-controlled areas 15 Feb amid calls by separatist groups to protest death of teenage boy and women during demonstrations against Indian rule.

January 2016

Asia

Kashmir

Less than a week after Indian PM Modi paid surprise visit to Pakistani PM Sharif, militants 2 Jan attacked Indian airbase in Pthankot in Punjab near Pakistan border, killing seven soldiers; five attackers reported killed. Indian authorities said evidence suggests Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohammad behind attack, although Kashmiri United Jihad Council claimed responsibility 4 Jan. Pakistani govt 13 Jan announced several Jaish-e-Mohammad members arrested in Punjab suspected of involvement in attack, including founder Maulana Azhar; Jaish-e-Mohammad denied Azhar had been arrested. Indian officials 18 Jan announced laser fences to be established across 40 “vulnerable” stretches along border. FM-level talks arranged for 15 Jan postponed to “near future” following 2 Jan attack. Pro-independence demonstrators and Indian security forces clashed in Srinagar 20 Jan; one civilian killed, prompting further demonstrations 22 Jan.

December 2015

Asia

Kashmir

Indian and Pakistani national security advisers met in Bangkok 6 Dec, discussed peace and security, terrorism, Kashmir, Line of Control (LoC). Indian FM Sushma Swaraj 8-9 Dec attended conference in Islamabad in first visit by Indian diplomat to Pakistan in three years; issued joint statement saying both countries “condemned terrorism and resolved to cooperate to eliminate it”, agreed to “Comprehensive Bilateral Dialogue”. Indian PM Modi paid surprise visit to Pakistan PM Sharif’s Lahore residence via Kabul 25 Dec, first by an Indian leader in almost twelve years; agreed to foreign secretaries meeting mid Jan. Pakistan defence secretary Alam Khattak 4 Dec told Senate’s standing committing on defence India had violated ceasefire 247 times since PM Modi’s election in May 2014: 163 along LoC and 84 along Working Boundary; resulted in at least 39 Pakistani civilians killed, 150 wounded. One civilian and six Indian security officials injured in terrorist attack on Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) convoy 7 Dec in Anantnag district; two militants killed 8 Dec in clashes with police and CRPF in Pulwama district; Indian army reportedly prevented infiltration attempt 4 Dec in Poonch district, three guerrillas killed. Indian security forces 4 Dec launched anti-militancy operation in Kupwara district, two militants and soldier killed.

November 2015

Asia

Kashmir

Firing from Pakistan-administered Kashmir reportedly killed two Indian soldiers 2 Nov. Pakistan’s foreign ministry representative 4 Nov told Senate that Indian firing across LoC had killed 87 Pakistani civilians and injured 407 since Jan 2010. Indian colonel killed by suspected militants in clash in N Kashmir 17 Nov; four suspected militants and one soldier killed in three separate clashes 23 Nov; three militants killed in attack on army base in Tangdhar 25 Nov, one civilian also killed; militant group Jaish-e-Muhammad claimed responsibility for attack. Army 24 Nov said at least 60 militants active in N Kashmir. Pakistani foreign office spokesperson 5 Nov criticised Indian govt for arresting 389 Kashmiri separatists ahead of visit by PM Modi to Srinagar.

October 2015

Asia

Kashmir

Indian FM Sushma Swaraj 1 Oct rejected four-point peace plan presented by Pakistani PM Sharif to UNGA previous day, said Pakistan must give up terrorism, called for revival of dialogue. Pakistan ambassador to UN 2 Oct accused India of committing human rights abuses in Jammu and Kashmir and sponsoring terrorism in Pakistan. Indian police reported high-ranking member of Lashkar-e-Taiba Abu Qasim killed in clash with security forces 29 Oct. Two Pakistani children reported killed in exchange of fire between Indian and Pakistani security forces near Sialkot 26 Oct. Indian security forces clashed with Pakistani militant group Jaish-e-Mohammad in Tral 4 Oct, two militants reported killed. Several killed in Indian elite counter-insurgency forces operation in Haphruda forest in Handwara 4 Oct. Several killed in clashes between military and insurgents in Pulwama district late Oct. China reportedly constructing road tunnels through Kashmir as part of China Pakistan Economic Corridor.

September 2015

Asia

Kashmir

Hostile rhetoric and deadly exchanges of fire along Line of Control (LoC) dividing Pakistan and Indian-administered Jammu & Kashmir continued, undercutting prospects of productive bilateral engagement. Pakistan 5 Sept called on UNSC to urge India to abide by 2003 ceasefire, accusing India of 36 violations in July and of killing twenty civilians in Aug. India and Pakistan 6 Sept exchanged heavy fire in Saujiyan and Poonch; one civilian killed. India 9 Sept accused Pakistan of injuring two soldiers in LoC cross-firing. Indian home minister 11 Sept told Pakistan Punjab Rangers director “India will not fire the first bullet towards Pakistan along the border”. During biannual meeting on border security and cooperation, directors of Pakistan Punjab Rangers and Indian Border Security Force pledged to de-escalate tensions, resolve border management issues, curb smuggling and other illegal border crossings. Soon after, Pakistan accused India of unprovoked shelling/firing killing soldier in Pakistan-administered Azad Jammu & Kashmir 14 Sept, and killing three civilians 17 Sept. Commanders of Indian and Pakistani armies 21 Sept discussed ways to lower tensions along LoC.

August 2015

Asia

Kashmir

Clashes across the Line of Control (LoC) and Working Boundary dividing Pakistan and Indian-administered Kashmir escalated, prompting UNSG Ban to express “serious concern” 18 Aug. Border security forces fired at each other 4 Aug near Sialkot in Pakistani Punjab; one Indian, two Pakistanis reported killed. UN Military Observer Group team visited area after Pakistan demanded inquiry. India 5 Aug reported arrest of Pakistani who allegedly attacked Indian Border Security convoy in India-administered Kashmir, killing two soldiers. India and Pakistan 15-16 Aug traded cross-border firing; three Pakistani and four Indian civilians killed, 40 injured. Pakistani sniper 25 Aug reportedly fired at Indian soldiers, killing one. Nine civilians reported killed, 63 wounded as Indian and Pakistani border guards traded gunfire near Sialkot 28 Aug. Countries 16-17 Aug summoned each other’s ambassadors to protest ceasefire violations. Planned talks between countries’ national security advisers cancelled at last minute 22 Aug; meeting of director-generals of Indian Border Security Force and Pakistan Rangers reportedly planned for Sept.

July 2015

Asia

Kashmir

Surge of clashes across Line of Control (LoC) dividing Kashmir and Working Boundary dividing Pakistan and Indian-administered Kashmir. Pakistan 6 July reported shelling near Sialkot from Indian side of Working Boundary; India 10 July said Pakistani sniper shot Indian border guard dead across Line of Control (LoC). 10 July meeting between Pakistani and Indian PMs on sidelines of Shanghai Cooperation Organisation in Russia issued short joint statement condemning terrorism, pledging to cooperate in eliminating it; agreed to meetings between national security advisors, between director generals of Pakistan Rangers and Indian Border Security Force, and between directors general of military operations; sides also agreed to release detained fishermen, to discuss ways to expedite trial for 2008 Mumbai bombing. Despite statement, cross-border clashes intensified. Punjab Rangers 15 July said Indian Border Security Forces fired near Sialkot; India claimed to be responding to Pakistani shelling in which a civilian died. Pakistani military same day claimed it shot down Indian drone. Islamabad 17 July formally protested alleged Indian ceasefire violations to UN Military Observer’s Group in India and Pakistan (UNMOGIP), soon after a teenaged Pakistani girl reportedly killed in LoC crossfire. UNMOGIP members 20 July visited Sialkot district in Pakistan’s Punjab province to inspect sites reportedly affected by Indian shelling. Five people killed in series of attacks on Indian side around Sopore late month; one injured in Srinagar 24 July. Ten killed, including three militants, in day-long clash between police and gunmen in India’s northern frontier state Punjab 27 July; National Security Adviser Ajit Doval called incident “very serious”, other officials suggested Pakistani involvement.

June 2015

Asia

Kashmir

Month saw increasingly aggressive rhetoric by Pakistani and Indian officials, including implied threats of a military confrontation. Pakistan Army Chief Raheel Sharif speaking at National Defence University in Islamabad 3 June said Pakistan and Kashmir inseparable. Defence Minister Khawaja Asif next day reiterated claim that India’s main intelligence agency supporting terrorism in Balochistan and other parts of Pakistan. On 7 June visit to Dhaka, Modi said Pakistan “promotes terrorism”. In apparent bit to ease tensions, Modi 16 June called PM Sharif, offered to release detained Pakistani fishermen. U.S. Sec State Kerry same day called Sharif to voice concerns about rising India-Pakistan tensions; UNSG Ban also encouraged sides to engage. Pakistan 18 June released 113 Indian fishermen, New Delhi three days later released 88 Pakistani fishermen. Indian authorities 25 May reported three soldiers and a militant killed in clashes along Line of Control (LoC). Indian soldiers 6 June reportedly shot dead three Pakistani militants attempting to cross LoC. Former militant Aijaz Ahmad Reshi killed 15 June, fourth such incident in week involving alleged separatists in Sopore; separatist leaders of Hurriyat Conference and Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front 17 June called for complete strike in J&K, accusing militias backed by Indian security forces of murders. Two suspected militants and one civilian killed in gun battle, Indian-administered Kashmir 21 June.

May 2015

Asia

Kashmir

Following Lahore court’s April release of Lashkar-e-Tayyaba (LeT) operative and UN-designated terrorist Zakiur Rehman Lakhvi, charged with masterminding 2008 Mumbai attack, India’s permanent representative to UN early May requested UN act against his release; U.S. ambassador to India said release “a mistake”. Pakistan army 5 May issued statement accusing India’s intelligence agency of “involvement in whipping up terrorism in Pakistan”; FM Chaudhry reiterated accusation 14 May. J&K chief Minister Mufti Mohammed Sayeed 16 May pledged to improve cross-LoC travel and trade. India’s foreign ministry 12 May summoned Chinese envoy to object to passage of proposed China-Pakistan Economic Corridor through Gilgit-Baltistan, which India considers part of Kashmir and thus disputed territory. Pakistan early May refused request by Afghan President Ghani to allow trade between India and Afghanistan to transit through Pakistan’s Wagah border. Several Indian army personnel and militants reported killed in clashes during month.

April 2015

Asia

Kashmir

Region saw sharpest rise in violence in months. Indian army 13 April reportedly killed two men in southern Kashmir, militant and his non-combatant brother. Violent protests erupted next day, injuring at least six; police placed separatist leaders Yasin Malik and Masarat Alam under preventive custody. Separatist Hurriyat Conference leader Syed Ali Geelani called for strike, which saw violence break out in several areas as police clashed with protesters. Police shot dead 16-year-old boy during protest outside Srinagar 18 April. Pakistani soldiers patrolling Working Boundary between Pakistan and India-administered Kashmir on high alert after Indian army shelling reportedly damaged houses near Pakistani Punjab’s Sialkot district 16 April. Lashkar-e-Tayyaba (LeT) operative Zakiur Rehman Lakhvi, charged with masterminding 2008 Mumbai attack, released on bail 10 April after Lahore High Court dismissed govt detention order; Punjab govt 14 April petitioned Supreme Court to overturn decision.

March 2015

Asia

Kashmir

Indian FM Jaishankar visited Pakistan early March, met with PM Sharif and FM Chaudhry; Pakistan’s foreign ministry described visit as “ice-breaking development”, Jaishankar said countries “agreed to work together to find common ground and narrow differences”. Followed 26 Feb visit by Pakistani army chief Raheel Sharif to locations in Punjab along working boundary separating Pakistan and India-administered Kashmir, during which he said “any provocation along the LoC (Line of Control) or the Working Boundary will meet a befitting response”. Six people including two terrorists, three security forces and a civilian killed in militant attack on police station in Jammu 20 March. Indian Defence Minister Parrikar 21 March said security forces had killed 26 terrorists so far in 2015. People’s Democratic Party (PDP) Mufti Mohammed Sayeed sworn in as chief minister of Indian-administered Jammu and Kashmir 1 March, 7 March ordered release of separatist leader and general secretary of All-Parties Hurriyat Conference Masarat Alam Bhat, provoking strong opposition from coalition govt partner PM Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party. Islamabad High Court 13 March ordered release on bail of Lashkar-e-Tayyaba operative Zakiur Rehman Lakhvi, charged with involvement in 2008 Mumbai attack, provoking strong reaction from New Delhi; Rehman detained by Punjab govt.

February 2015

Asia

Kashmir

Shelling continued across Line of Control (LoC) and India-Pakistan working boundary; Pakistan accused India of killing civilian 14 Feb. Pakistani PM Sharif 5 Feb addressed representatives of separatist All Parties Hurriyat Conference in Pakistan-administered Kashmir on occasion of Kashmir Solidarity Day: reiterated support for Kashmiris’ right to self-determination, peaceful resolution of conflict. Pakistani Senate and National Assembly passed resolutions pledging support for Kashmiris, condemning “farcical” state elections in India-administered Kashmir. Trade and travel resumed across LoC 17 Feb after being halted following Indian arrest of truck driver accused of smuggling narcotics early Feb. At least six militants reported killed by Indian forces late Feb including two in Shopian district 25 Feb.

January 2015

Asia

Kashmir

Firing across Line of Control and India-Pakistan working boundary continued: fifteen soldiers and civilians reported killed late Dec/early Jan. Governor’s rule imposed on Jammu and Kashmir 9 Jan after caretaker chief minister resigned following failure of parties to establish coalition govt after Nov-Dec state elections. Several militants reported killed by police, including five in Shopian district 15 Jan; army officer, policeman killed by militants in Pulwama district 27 Jan.

December 2014

Asia

Kashmir

Final four phases of Jammu and Kashmir state elections held 2-20 Dec; People’s Democratic Party (PDP) won 28 seats, PM Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) second with 25 seats. Militants launched several deadly attacks during election period, including at least 21 reported killed in four separate attacks 5 Dec. Four Pakistani, one Indian soldier reported killed in cross-border firing 31 Dec.

November 2014

Asia

Kashmir

First phase of Jammu and Kashmir state elections began 25 Nov, results due 23 Dec. Indian authorities early Nov arrested several Kashmiri separatist leaders; move provoked demonstrations in Srinagar, human rights activists argued arrests aimed at suppressing anti-India vote. Indian defense minister 5 Nov said Pakistani authorities must choose between dialogue with Indian govt or Kashmiri separatists; Pakistan rejected conditions for dialogue. Twelve reported killed in attack on army base near border with Pakistan 27-28 Nov, including four militants, three soldiers, five civilians. Occasional firing across Line of Control (LoC) continued, including one soldier, one civilian reported killed 8 Nov. Indian military court 13 Nov sentenced five soldiers, including two officers, to life imprisonment over murder of three civilians in 2010.

October 2014

Asia

Kashmir

Hostilities across Line of Control (LoC) continued, often provoked by Pakistani military to provide cover for cross-border militant movement; at least 20 civilians reported killed. Indian govt 21 Oct warned continued violations would result in “pain” for Pakistan. Fears hostile Indian rhetoric could further narrow options for Pakistani govt struggling with military to exercise control over India policy: Pakistani army general Raheel Sharif 18 Oct said lasting peace in region depends on “fair and just resolution” of Kashmir issue, reflecting continued military rejection of PM Sharif’s attempts to normalise relations with India through stronger economic ties. Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) Chief Minister Omar Abdullah 4 Oct said upcoming state elections should be delayed until residents have recovered from deadly Sept floods; election commission late Oct announced month-long five-phase election starting 25 Nov. Militant reported killed by security forces 3 Oct in Pulwama district; soldier killed in clash with militants 13 Oct in Kupwara district.

September 2014

Asia

Kashmir

Pakistani govt’s efforts to normalise relations with India through trade liberalisation jeopardised by sporadic clashes along Line of Control (LoC), Pakistani military’s reported attempts to use anti-govt protests in Islamabad to pressure PM Sharif to further relinquish control over foreign policy. Sharif called for international support to resolve Kashmir dispute in UNGA speech late month; Indian PM Modi questioned Sharif’s highlighting of Kashmir issue, offered bilateral talks but rejected dialogue under “shadow of terrorism”. Pakistani Islamic militant group Lashkar-e-Tayyaba provided assistance to flood-affected population in Punjab and Azad Jammu and Kashmir, leader Hafiz Saeed accused India of deliberately allowing waters to flood Pakistan; claims echoed by Islamist Jamaat-i-Islami. PMs Sharif and Modi exchanged letters offering assistance in relief efforts. Pakistani high commissioner Abdul Basit mid-month met Indian Foreign Secretary Singh following Aug cancellation of FM-level talks. Several militants reported killed by security forces including three alleged Jaish-e-Muhammad members 2 Sept in Pulwama district; Lashkar-e-Tayyaba commander killed in Kupwara district 9 Sept; several militants killed along LoC, including four in clashes 20 Sept.

August 2014

Asia

Kashmir

Sharp deterioration in India-Pakistan relations as FM-level talks, aimed at setting agenda for resuming dialogue process, cancelled by India following 18 Aug meeting between Pakistan’s High Commissioner and Kashmiri separatist leaders in New Delhi. Meeting followed resumption of periodic clashes along Line of Control: at least dozen casualties reported. PM Modi 12 Aug visited Kargil in Jammu and Kashmir, first PM visit since 1999, condemned Pakistan for “proxy war of terrorism against India”; allegation strongly refuted by Pakistan. Unknown gunmen 13 Aug reportedly killed 2 police, 1 civilian in Pulwama district; militants 16 Aug shot dead 2 soldiers outside Pulwama air base.

July 2014

Asia

Kashmir

Several incidents of cross-border violence including: Indian army 3 July reportedly killed 3 militants along Line of Control (LoC); Pakistani troops 16 July reportedly fired on Indian border outposts killing soldier; Pakistani civilian reported killed in Indian mortar shelling days later near Punjab border, another Pakistani killed 23 July in Shakargarh; 2 reported killed, including 1 Indian soldier, in separate border incidents 22 July. Lashkar-e-Tayyaba militant reported killed 9 July during joint army-police operation in Kupwara district. 1 police shot dead by militants in Bijbehara town 25 July, another killed in grenade blast during protest in Sopore next day. Pakistani Finance Minister Ishaq Dar 17 July said govt willing to negotiate reduction of negative list of tradable items from India if bilateral dialogue revived, including on Kashmir dispute; commerce ministers scheduled to meet 24 July in Bhutan during eighth SAFTA ministerial council meeting, Indian minister did not attend.

June 2014

Asia

Kashmir

Month saw continued ceasefire violations along Line of Control (LoC); Indian Defence Minister Arun Jaitley 16 June called on Pakistan to end violations. Indian soldier killed in IED explosion 12 June. Pakistani PM Sharif early month sent letter to Indian PM Modi expressing desire for enhanced cooperation, peacebuilding. Militant Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) 9 June blamed India for attack on Pakistan’s Karachi airport (see Pakistan), threatened retaliation; LeT commander reported killed by security forces 1 June in Kupwara district, another killed 23 June in Sopore. 3 separatist militants killed by security forces in Pulwama district 19 June.

May 2014

Asia

Kashmir

Last phase of Indian general elections held 7 May in Jammu and Kashmir: opposition BJP and Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) won all seats. Election turnout at 50.1%, up from 39.7% in 2009. Polls relatively calm despite separatist boycotts, demonstrations in several towns and reports of threats to voters. Militants 8 May killed village govt head associated with National Congress in Kulgam district. 2 reported killed when PDP supporters clashed with supporters of losing candidate in Kupwara district 16 May. Several incidents along Line of Control including Indian soldier killed, 2 wounded, in IED explosion 19 May. 2 militants reported killed by police near Srinagar 25 May.

April 2014

Asia

Kashmir

Polls opened 10 April in Jammu and Kashmir for voting in India’s general election, low turnout reported; several separatist militant groups called for boycott, carried out attacks including killing 3 village council heads south of Srinagar. Security forces reportedly opened fire on protesters in Srinagar. 30 April, 1 killed; Hurriyat Conference called general strike. 2 militants, 2 police killed 13 April during attack targeting National Conference youth leader and son of high court judge south of Srinagar; police killed both alleged Lashkar-e-Tayyaba attackers. Late-month exchanges of fire between Indian and Pakistani troops across Line of Control, no casualties reported.

March 2014

Asia

Kashmir

Protests erupted in Jammu and Kashmir after security forces killed teenager in Srinagar 14 March; govt imposed curfew, arrested separatist leaders including Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front leader Yasin Malik. PM Sharif 24 March asked for U.S. assistance to settle Kashmir dispute in meeting with Sec State Kerry. Tensions over normalisation of bilateral trade ties continued. Security forces killed 3 suspected militants in Kathua following 28 March terror attack that killed 2.

February 2014

Asia

Kashmir

Cross-Line of Control (LoC) trade resumed after Pakistan and India 12 Feb agreed to release stranded trucks and drivers, following 17 Jan detention of Pakistani truck driver for alleged drug smuggling. Indian trade minister cancelled planned attendance at India Trade Show in Lahore mid-Feb amid concerns about operationalisation of Jan trade pact to grant liberalised trade status by end-Feb. Protests broke out in Kupwara region after Indian army 24 Feb killed 7 civilians mistaken for rebels; strike in Kashmir Valley 28 Feb. 2 Hizbul Mujahideen Indian separatist group members killed 13 Feb in encounter with security forces in Sophian, S Kashmir.

January 2014

Asia

Kashmir

Tensions on Line of Control (LoC) lessened following Dec discussions between senior Indian and Pakistani military officials on restoring 2003 ceasefire, fewer clashes. Pakistan described as “provocative and regrettable” 13 Jan remarks of newly-appointed Indian army Chief General Bikram Singh admitting killing of 10 Pakistani soldiers in retaliatory fire across LoC in Dec, and warnings that India would retaliate in same way against further ceasefire violations. Gen Singh also ruled out withdrawing army from Indian-administered Kashmir or repealing controversial Armed Forces Special Power Act. Pakistani troops reportedly violated ceasefire 26 Jan; Indian troops did not retaliate. Pakistani and Indian commerce ministers 18 Jan agreed on measures including uninterrupted trade across Wagah/Attari border and more liberal visa policy for businessmen; Pakistan promised to grant India Non-Discriminatory Market Access by late Feb, instead of more controversial Most Favoured Nation status.

December 2013

Asia

Kashmir

Pakistan PM Sharif 3 Dec reportedly said failure to resolve Kashmir problem could trigger war “anytime”, PM’s office later denied statement; Indian PM Singh 5 Dec warned Pakistan would lose in event of war. Pakistani and Indian security forces meeting in Lahore agreed to reduce LoC ceasefire violations, boost joint security mechanisms.

November 2013

Asia

Kashmir

Lull in Indian-Pakistani military exchanges across Line of Control (LoC). Indian military 22 Nov claimed Pakistani troops opened fire on Indian positions in Mendhar sector, Poonch district, 1 injured. Pakistan PM Sharif 23 Nov said India-Pakistan dialogue to resume after early 2014 Indian parliamentary elections. Indian Secretary of Commerce Arvind Mehta 15 Nov urged Pakistan to grant India Most Favoured Nation (MFN) trading status. Unidentified militants 7 Nov killed 2 policemen in Avantipur, next to Srinagar; 16 Nov injured 5 soldiers in ambush on army convoy on Kupwara-Srinagar road.

October 2013

Asia

Kashmir

Regular gun and mortar fire exchanges between Pakistan and India despite late Sept agreement between leaders to stop attacks. India accused Pakistani troops of firing at over 50 Indian border posts 24 Oct in what it called most serious ceasefire violation in a decade, killing 1 Indian soldier and injuring 6; claimed Pakistan shelled Indian military post in Uri sector of LoC 28 Oct, killing 1 soldier. Indian troops 4 Oct reportedly fired across LoC, killed infant, injured 5 civilians. Pakistan PM Sharif 10 Oct said normalised relations with India a priority, but finance minister same day said India’s Most Favoured Nation trading status to be suspended until May 2014 Indian parliamentary elections. Indian President Mukherjee 5 Oct accused Pakistan of exporting state-sponsored terrorism.

September 2013

Asia

Kashmir

India and Pakistan PMs met 29 Sept, agreed to stop Kashmir attacks following several exchanges of heavy fire on line-of-control (LoC) during Sept; at least 9 killed 26 Sept in militant attack on Indian police station and army camp near Pakistan border ahead of talks. Pakistani Finance Minister Ishaq Dar 7 Sept assured IMF India would retain Most Favoured Nation (MFN) status despite Aug threat to withdraw status after military exchanges with India along LoC left 2 Pakistanis injured. Indian police 7 Sept killed 4 in Shopian, imposed curfew in district; police claimed 2 victims were rebels attempting attack on base, residents said victims civilians; police 11 Sept violently dispersed mass protest, killing 1 and injuring 13. All Parties Hurriyat Conference mid Sept called strike in Kashmir valley to protest killings. Suspected separatist rebels 23 Sept killed Indian soldier, injured another at Srinagar market; Indian army 23 Sept killed suspected militant trying to cross LoC in Kupwara region. PMs Singh and Sharif 29 Sept met on sidelines of UNGA, tasked Directors General Military Operations to seek means to restore 2003 ceasefire.

August 2013

Asia

Kashmir

India 6 Aug claimed Pakistani troops fired at Line of Control (LoC) border post killing 5 soldiers, said incident “gross violation” of 2003 ceasefire; Pakistan reported 2 soldiers killed in separate attacks near Skardu 20 Aug and near Rawalakot in Poonch district 22 Aug. Unidentified militants 27 Aug killed two Indian police officers in separate attacks in Shopian, Anantnag districts of South Kashmir; Indian police 30 Aug reportedly killed at least 5 militants during clash in Najwan forest area near Ganderbal district. Indian FM Salman Khurshid 12 Aug said secretary-level talks with Pakistan will only take place in “environment free of terror”. Pakistan PM Sharif 14 Aug called for de-escalation, reiterated his govt’s resolve to normalise relations.

July 2013

Asia

Kashmir

4 killed, dozens injured 18 July when demonstrators protesting alleged violence by Indian patrols clashed with Indian Army in Ramban; authorities declared curfew. Skirmishes continued along Line of Control (LoC) including 5 suspected Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) infiltrators reportedly killed in gunfight with Indian army, 2 Indian soldiers wounded by IED 8 July, 1 Pakistan soldier reportedly killed 27 July by Indian military. Suspected LeT militants reportedly killed policeman in Kupwara 13 July. Police 23 July announced Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) militant commander Qari Yasir killed by security forces in Lolab. 3 militants, 1 Indian policeman killed 1 July in gunfight in Pulwama. 4 policemen injured, arrested Hizbul Mujahideen militant killed 17 July in grenade attack in Srinagar.

June 2013

Asia

Kashmir

Series of skirmishes reported alongside Line of Control (LoC), including 3 militants killed in gunfight with Indian forces 2 June; 1 Indian soldier killed in 7 June gunfight, firing allegedly originated from Pakistani side; Pakistani army 19 June reported Indian fire killed 9-year-old girl and injured 3 civilians. Pakistani Air Force 11 June reported Indian jets violated Pakistani airspace, Indian Air Force said incident unintentional technical violation. Several militants reported killed in gunfights with police in Pulwama, S Kashmir early June. Unidentified gunmen 22 June killed 2 police in Srinagar; 24 June ambushed Indian Army convoy in Srinagar, 8 killed. Indian PMSingh 25 June visited J&K, said ready  for talks with those who shun violence.

May 2013

Asia

Kashmir

1 soldier killed in 18 May gunfight with suspected militants on Indian side of Line of Control. Unidentified gunmen 10 May killed Indian police officer in Pulwama, S Kashmir. Police 19 May arrested suspected Lashkar-e-Tayyaba (LeT) treasurer in Baramulla. LeT militant Hilal Maulvi killed in 23 May gunfight with police in Srinagar. 4 soldiers and 1 Hizbul Mujahideen militant killed 24 May in heavy fighting in Pulwama. Police 31 May killed Hizbul Mujahideen divisional commander in Wandena, Pulwama.

April 2013

Asia

Kashmir

Region wide strike 7 April demanding burial of Kashmiri militants executed in India; 7 injured in city of Baramulla in clashes with police. Unidentified gunmen 8 April killed head of village affiliated with Indian National Conference party in Pulwama district, S Kashmir. Police 18 April arrested high-ranking Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) member, killed militant in gunfight in Sopore, N Kashmir. 4 Indian policemen killed 26 April in suspected LeT attack in Baramulla. Indian govt reported 35% decrease in incidents of terrorist violence in 2012, increase in infiltration attempts from Pakistan. Indian Defence Minister reported Indian army killed 168 militants in J&K in last 2 years.

March 2013

Asia

Kashmir

Series of attacks by militants in Jammu and Kashmir: 2 Indian policemen killed by unidentified gunmen 2 March in Handwara; 5 soldiers and 2 militants killed, 1 arrested in 13 March attack against Central Reserve Police Force camp in Srinagar, arrested militant reportedly confessed affiliation with Lashkar-e-Tayyaba (LeT); suspected LeT militants 19 March killed boy in Sopore; 3 Border Security Force soldiers injured in 21 March militant attack in Srinagar. 1 killed, dozens injured during protests against Indian forces in Baramulla 5-6 March. J&K govt 11 March released 1,811 people involved in cases of stone throwing during summer 2010 unrest. Indian Defence Minister Antony 4 March claimed 188 violations by Pakistan along Line of Control (LoC) 2010-2012. Pakistan’s parliament 14 March condemned India’s Feb execution of Kashmiri militant Afzal Guru, demanded return of body to family, sparking protests from India. Indian parliament condemned Pakistan’s interference in J&K, declaring Pakistan-administered Azad Jammu and Kashmir an integral part of India.

February 2013

Asia

Kashmir

Increased tensions as India 9 Feb secretly executed Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) militant Afzal Guru, convicted over 2001 attack on Indian parliament, prompting protests in Jammu and Kashmir despite imposition of 7-day curfew, media blackout. 3 dead, dozens injured, dozens arrested as protesters clashed with security forces; increasing calls for return of Guru’s body to hometown. UNSG Ban and EU foreign policy chief Ashton criticised execution. Lashkar-e-Tayyaba and JeM militant groups 13 Feb vowed to “step-up jihad” in Jammu and Kashmir to avenge execution; JeM 26 Feb reportedly threatened to blow up rail junctions near Nainital. Unidentified gunmen 24 Feb killed head of village affiliated with Indian National Conference party in Baramulla, W of Srinagar. Pakistani soldier killed in gunfight with Indian troops 14 Feb after reportedly crossing Line of Control (LoC), circumstances contested; 2 Indian soldiers injured in clash. Indian army 26 Feb reported it killed suspected infiltrator in Rajouri district. 4 minors injured 3 Feb by unexploded shell in Aragam Chattabandy, N Kashmir.

January 2013

Asia

Kashmir

Escalation of tensions along Line of Control (LoC) early month as Pakistan 6 Jan accused Indian forces of killing Pakistani soldier after crossing LoC; India 8 Jan claimed Pakistani forces crossed LoC, killed 2 Indian soldiers. Daily heavy artillery shelling followed from both sides, killing second Pakistani soldier 10 Jan. Pakistani FM Hina Rabbani Khar early Jan accused India of “warmongering”, Indian army chief Gen. Bikram Singh urged troops to be “aggressive and offensive” when dealing with gunfire from Pakistan. Indian and Pakistani military commanders 16 Jan agreed not to allow escalation of tensions along LoC; trade and travel at Chakan da Bagh border point, suspended following shootings, resumed late Jan. In Baramulla district unidentified gunmen 11 Jan shot dead local official and 12 Jan injured another, triggering resignation of some 40 local officials. In Pulwama district police prolonged curfew until 31 Dec to contain violent demonstrations against alleged firing on protesters by police during 28 Dec anti-India protests.

December 2012

Asia

Kashmir

Security forces killed several Lashkar-e-Tayyaba (LeT) militants in Baramulla, Kulgam and Pulwama districts during month; 13 Dec killed 3 unidentified militants in separate gunfights. Militant suspected of involvement in 2011 Delhi high court blast shot dead by police 20 Dec in Kishtwar district. Violent anti-India protests broke out 28 Dec in Pulwama district; police reportedly injured 7 protesters, imposed curfew. Pakistani troops allegedly fired at Indian outposts along Line of Control. Indian soldier killed 25 Dec in Poonch district by cross-border fire from Pakistan.

November 2012

Asia

Kashmir

Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) commander Yasir Tunda killed late Nov in Baramulla district in joint army and police raid. Indian army early Nov killed 4 alleged militants near Line of Control (LoC) in Kupwara district. 2 suspected militants, 3 soldiers killed 13 Nov in gunfight near LoC in Baramulla district. Security forces 13 Nov killed militant in Kulgam district. 1 police killed 27 Nov after alleged militants attacked police camp in Srinagar. Grenade explosion 28 Nov injured 3 in Bijbehara. Shiite-Sunni clashes erupted in Srinagar 28 Nov, authorities imposed curfew in parts of city.

October 2012

Asia

Kashmir

Militants from Pakistan-based extremist group Lashkare- Tayyaba (LeT) 19 Oct opened fire on army convoy and hotel near Srinagar killing 2. 2 killed, 3 injured 21 Oct in LeT gunfight with police in Baramulla district. Suspected militants 5 Oct threw grenade at Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) bunker in Baramulla district, 3 police injured. Police 1 Oct killed 5 suspected Mujahidin in Ganderbal district, 23 Oct arrested 3 militants in Kulgam district for alleged threats against village leaders. 3 civilians killed 16 Oct when Pakistani troops reportedly opened fire along Line of Control (LoC) due to “construction of new forward posts by India” in Baramulla district. Buddhist-Muslim tensions erupted late Oct in Chenab Valley, Kargil district.

August 2012

Asia

Kashmir

17 Aug clashes between police, demonstrators in Srinagar protesting persecution of Myanmar Muslims injured 12. Angry mob torched police car after Hurriyat separatist leaders put under house arrest 18-19 Aug. Jamaat-e-Islami-affiliated militant leader Aziz killed by U.S. drone strike in Pakistan mid-month. Police 21 Aug arrested 2 Islamic Front militants allegedly involved in recent Srinagar attacks. 1 suspected terrorist killed 29 Aug during ongoing police operation in Kulgam area.

July 2012

Asia

Kashmir

5 killed, 7 injured during 30 June-6 July military operation against militants in Handwara-Kupwara belt. Unidentified gunmen 3 July shot dead policeman in Pulwama district. Gun attacks 4 July killed 2 police officers in Srinagar, a week after fire destroyed historic Sufi shrine.

June 2012

Asia

Kashmir

Grenade blast outside paramilitary bunker 17 June killed 5 Indian soldiers. Pakistani forces 13 June killed 1 Indian soldier along Line of Control in firefight. 4 Indian policemen arrested mid-month on suspicion of ties to Hizbul Mujahideen Indian separatist group. Police 25 June tear-gassed protestors demonstrating against destruction of temple in Srinagar, at least 6 injured.

May 2012

Asia

Kashmir

Police 21 May prevented Hurriyat Conference protest in Srinagar commemorating 1990 Mirwaiz Farooq assassination. 14 injured 19 May in grenade attack on police station near Srinagar. Senior Hizbul Mujahidin militant killed 25 May by security forces in Jammu. 7 Indian soldiers injured in 30 May Srinagar attack.

April 2012

Asia

Kashmir

5 killed, 50 injured 4 April in grenade attack on Sunni rally in Gilgit Baltistan. 5 separatist guerillas killed 5 April in Kupwara district. Indian policeman killed 20 April in Srinagar. Indian police 21 April arrested alleged mastermind of Bijbehara car blast.

March 2012

Asia

Kashmir

1 killed 22 March in car blast in Anantnag district; militant killed same day in Baramulla district. Five Lashkar-e-Taiba militants killed 28 March in Kupwara district. 17 arrested following community clashes 8-17 March in Rajouri that left several injured.

February 2012

Asia

Kashmir

Separatist Hurriyat Conference in protest against police detention called 7 Feb. Opposition National Panthers Party march on legislative assembly intercepted 23 Feb, several arrested.

January 2012

Asia

Kashmir

1 killed, 5 injured 7 Jan in shootout between police and suspected militants in Sopore; militant killed 19 Jan in gunfight near Line of Control, Poonch district. Police 4 Jan announced arrest of 6 suspected separatists affiliated with militant Islamic group Lashkar-e-Taiba. Hardline separatist group Hurriyat 2 Jan condemned civilian killing during protest against N Kashmir power cuts as “state terrorism”; senior Hurriyat member Auhammad Ashraf Sahrai put under indefinite house arrest 2 Jan.

December 2011

Asia

Kashmir

Suspected rebels 12 Dec fired on Law Minister Ali Mohammed Sagar in Srinagar, killed policeman. Govt 17 Dec banned public assembly in Baramulla, N Kashmir. Army 15 Dec threat; 19 Dec said at least 100 guerrillas waiting to infiltrate Kashmir Valley across Line of Control. Indian army 23 Dec said Pakistan forces violated ceasefire 5, 14 and 23 Dec, claimed army fired on Indian patrol, posts. Suspected guerrillas 24 Dec killed ruling National Conference activist in Srinagar.

November 2011

Asia

Kashmir

Dispute between Kashmir state govt and army over partial revocation of Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA), which gives army wide law-enforcement powers and shields soldiers from prosecution, continued; India Kashmir chief minister Abdullah 2 Nov said he will consult with army, top ministers before making decision. Hurriyat Conference chairman Geelani 17 Nov said India showing “traditional inflexibility” over revocation of AFSPA. Several injured 7 Nov in clashes between police and demonstrators in Anantnag and Sopore. Following protests and police intervention, Army 22 Nov released 3 civilians arrested during crackdown in Anantnag district. Strike 25 Nov to protest continued detention and torture of political prisoners, minors, resulted in clashes in Srinagar and Maraj.

October 2011

Asia

Kashmir

Govt 1 Oct denied People’s Democratic Party (PDP) allegations of govt responsibility for 30 Sept death in detention of ruling National Conference (NC) leader Haji Muhammad Yusuf. Chief minister of Jammu and Kashmir states Omar Abdullah 21 Oct said situation in many areas sufficiently peaceful to lift Armed Forces Special Powers Act; Public Safety Act amended 29 Oct, reducing detention periods and scrapping child detention. 2 grenade explosions 25 Oct in Srinagar wounded at least 3 Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) officers. At least 3 injured 26 Oct in grenade explosion in Bijbehra town in South.

September 2011

Asia

Kashmir

Indian army 26-30 Sept clashed with militants in Kupwara district; 4 security personnel, 5 militants reported killed. Indian forces 1 Sept killed 3 Pakistani soldiers in firing across Line of Control. Pakistan army accused Indian forces of “unprovoked” attack; India denied, said Pakistani forces opened fire first. Locals 15 Sept protested over renewed militant activity in Neelum Valley.

August 2011

Asia

Kashmir

Fighting erupted 20 Aug in northern Gurez district, Indian army lieutenant and 12 suspected militants reported killed; army said militants tried to infiltrate Kashmir from Pakistan. Security forces 8 Aug reportedly killed 2 suspected members of Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) militant group. Media 26 Aug reported LeT admitted responsibility for April killing of cleric Maulvi Showkat Ahmed.

July 2011

Asia

Kashmir

Following 27 July new Delhi meeting between Indian FM Krishna and new Pakistani FM Khar, both hailed “new era” in relationship: agreed to strengthen counter-terrorism co-operation, announced new confidence building measure on Kashmir. Police 8 July said 97 violent incidents in Kashmir during first half of 2011, lowest figure during 20-year insurgency.

June 2011

Asia

Kashmir

India, Pakistan Foreign Secretaries met 23-25 June in Islamabad, first official talks since 2008 Mumbai terrorist attack; agreed to hold further talks, work to increase trade, nuclear confidence-building measures. Paramilitary troops 3 June killed 3 suspected Lashkar-e-Taiba militants in Sopore; 23 June killed 2 suspected militants in Poonch. Indian army 21 June claimed infiltration attempts by militants across border lowest in 20 years.

May 2011

Asia

Kashmir

India 2 May said killing of al-Qaeda head Osama bin Laden “underlined concern” Islamabad supports terrorist groups; Delhi expressed similar concern following militant attack on Karachi naval base 22-23 May (see Pakistan). David Headley, U.S. citizen accused of involvement in 2008 Mumbai terror attack, 23 May testified in U.S. court that ISI provided financial, military support to Lashkar-e-Tayyba militants carrying out attack.

April 2011

Asia

Kashmir

Moulana Showkat Shah, head of moderate separatist party Jamiat-e-Ahle Hadith, killed in 8 Apr blast outside Srinagar mosque; police 17 Apr arrested 3 members of hardline separatist group Saut-ul-Haq. Female candidate in Jammu & Kashmir local elections, held during month, killed 16 Apr by unidentified gunmen; police said suspected Lashkar-e-Taiba militants.

March 2011

Asia

Kashmir

Following 2-day bilateral meeting in New Delhi, Pakistan 28 March agreed to long-standing Indian demand that its investigators be allowed to visit Pakistan as part of probe of 2008 Mumbai terror attack. Amnesty International 21 March criticised Indian Public Safety Act allowing security forces to detain suspects without charges for up to 2 years in Kashmir. Govt-appointed negotiation panel 13 March called for independent investigation of violations by all parties; expected to submit final report April. State govt 15 March said will pay $1.15mn to relatives of some 100 civilians killed by security forces during 2010 protests. Indian police 10 March killed Sajjad Afghani, head of Pakistani militant group Jaish-e-Mohammad, in Srinagar.

February 2011

Asia

Kashmir

India, Pakistan 10 Feb announced formal peace talks will resume, likely in July; direct talks suspended since Nov 2008 Mumbai terror attack. India 13 Feb reiterated plan to withdraw 10,000 of 70,000 paramilitary troops stationed in Kashmir by end 2011. Suspected Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) militants 1 Feb killed 2 teenage girls outside Srinagar; first suspected LeT attack in 2011. Thousands protested across Valley 5 Feb after Indian troops 4 Feb killed student in Handwara.

January 2011

Asia

Kashmir

Indian Home Secretary G.K. Pillai 14 Jan said govt will cut troop level in Kashmir by 25% over next 12 months as a “confidence-building measure”; Defence Minister A.K. Anthony later clarified reduction only refers to paramilitary forces, not army; separatist leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani said proposal “inconsequential”, demanded full withdrawal.

December 2010

Asia

Kashmir

India Home Minister Chidambaram 9 Dec said “contours” of political solution to Kashmir issue to be ready within “a few months”, but civil society groups criticised govt exclusion of main separatist groups in dialogue. U.S. diplomatic cable released by WikiLeaks alleged ICRC accused Indian police of systematic torture of detainees 2002-2004.

November 2010

Asia

Kashmir

Relative calm prevailed with no new deaths from continued protests reported. Minor clashes with police 17 Nov after thousands protested across valley following Muslim festival Eid. Army 3 Nov killed 7 militants in separate gun battles; 4 militants, 1 police killed in 29 Nov Srinagar clash. After 2 visits to Valley during month, govt-appointed negotiation panel 14 Nov said roadmap for Kashmir solution to be completed in “6-9 months”. During early month visit to India, U.S. President Obama said U.S. “happy to play a role” in solving Kashmir dispute, but “cannot impose a solution”.

October 2010

Asia

Kashmir

Violent anti-India demonstrations lessened over month with no fatal police shootings of demonstrators reported. Indian govt 13 Oct named 3-member panel to mediate with “all shades of opinion” in Kashmir; main separatist groups dismissed panel as toothless without inclusion of members from governing parties. 50 students arrested during June protests released 6 Oct. Police 18 Oct arrested leader of separatist Pakistan Muslim League accused of instigating recent violent protests. 8 police, 1 militant killed in 1 Oct infiltration attempt in northern districts. Pakistani ex-president Musharraf 4 Oct confirmed Pakistan military trained militant groups in Kashmir during his time in office.

September 2010

Asia

Kashmir

Police killed at least 20 protesters as violent anti-India demonstrations continued, including at least 15 on 13 Sept when tens of thousands marched in Srinagar. Violence spread to new areas, with killing of 3 protesters by police in Mendhar in South 15 Sept. Police 12 Sept charged Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, leader of main separatist group All Parties Hurriyat Conference, with treason over allegedly inciting violent protests. All-party delegation visited Kashmir as part of govt peace initiative, met with 3 main separatist leaders 20 Sept. Delhi 25 Sept announced 8-point plan to defuse tensions, including release of students detained for throwing stones, opening of dialogue with Kashmiris. Schools re-opened 27 Sept after 3-month closure. Pakistan condemned crackdown on protesters, 26 Sept asked India to change policy as precondition for any discussion on Kashmir. Security forces killed several militants mid month in Pulwama, Bandipora districts.

August 2010

Asia

Kashmir

At least 40 demonstrators killed in clashes with police as anti-India protests continued; more than 63 killed since start of protests 11 June, worst since separatist revolt first broke out 1989; situation appeared to have calmed by end-month. India Home Minister Chidambaram 6 Aug alleged Pakistani involvement in demonstrations. 2 Lashkar-e-Taiba militants, 1 soldier killed in 16 Aug Rajouri district gun battle. Pakistan President Zardari criticised UK PM Cameron’s claim that Pakistan ignoring “home-grown” terrorism, made during early month visit to India.

July 2010

Asia

Kashmir

Huge anti-India protests continued throughout month across Valley, with at least 9 demonstrators killed in clashes with police in July. Indian govt 7 July deployed troops in Srinagar and Baramulla to quell protests, first Kashmir army patrols since 1990. India-imposed curfews continued off and on during month. 1 Indian army colonel, 1 senior Lashkar-e-Tayyaba militant group commander killed in 14 July gun battles. Pakistan, India FMs 15 July in first meeting since 2008 Mumbai terrorist attacks; little progress. Pakistan FM Qureshi accused India of “selectively” focusing on terrorism, refuted India Home Secretary G.K. Pillai’s 14 July accusation that ISI behind Mumbai attack.

June 2010

Asia

Kashmir

During early month visit to Valley, Indian PM Singh repeated offer of talks with separatist groups who shun violence. Indian army 6 June suspended 1 major, dismissed 1 colonel suspected of killing 3 civilians late April. Huge anti-India protests from mid-month over 11 civilians allegedly killed by Indian troops in separate incidents over month; Delhi 29 June imposed curfew. India, Pakistan Foreign Secretaries 24 June held “positive” talks in Islamabad ahead of July meeting of FMs.

May 2010

Asia

Kashmir

Indian PM Singh 24 May said “major effort” underway to build trust with Pakistan after early month meeting with Pakistani PM Gilani. Continued militant activity in Valley: 4 suspected militants, 2 soldiers killed in 7 May gun battle in Bandipora district. 1 Pakistani soldier killed in cross-border shooting 23 May. Indian anti-terrorism court 6 May sentenced to death Pakistani found guilty of Nov 2008 Mumbai attacks.

April 2010

Asia

Kashmir

India, Pakistan PMs 29 Apr agreed on formal steps towards resuming peace talks after meeting at Bhutan SAARC summit, suspended since Nov 2008 Mumbai terrorist attack. At least 4 soldiers, 17 militants killed early month in southern Rajouri district clashes. Police 4 Apr killed 1 militant in Pulwana district following failed assassination attempt of local Congress party leader.

March 2010

Asia

Kashmir

2 police, 1 civilian killed by suspected militants in 16 March separate Sopore, Srinagar clashes; Indian army 24 March killed 3 militants in infiltration attempt across LoC. Thousands called for “holy war” to liberate Kashmir during 23 March demonstration in Kotli inside Pakistan-controlled Kashmir. Trial against surviving gunman from Nov 2008 Mumbai terrorist attack ended 31 March, verdict expected 3 May.

February 2010

Asia

Kashmir

Early month violent demonstrations across Kashmir over alleged killing of 2 teenagers by police, paramilitary troops in separate incidents; govt 4 Feb imposed curfew across valley, 13 Feb suspended 14 paramilitary troops suspected of 2nd killing. Army 15 Feb killed 3 militants in Kulgam district. India, Pakistan Foreign Secretaries 25 Feb in 1st official meeting since Nov 2008 Mumbai attacks; India said meeting positive, but not ready to resume formal peace talks.

January 2010

Asia

Kashmir

Chief Minister Omar Abdullah 6 Jan pledged further cuts in Indian security forces after police reported militant violence in Kashmir down 25% during 2009. Traditional spike in violence ahead of 26 Jan Republic Day: 4 killed, including 1 police and 2 Lashkar-e-Taiba militants, in 7 Jan 20-hour gun battle in Srinagar; Indian troops 23 Jan killed top Hizbul Mujahedin militant group leader. At least 3 Pakistani soldiers killed in 6 Jan Rawalakot District blast, police said unclear if suicide attack. India 12 Jan said Indian paramilitary soldier killed by Pakistani troops firing across LoC.

December 2009

Asia

Kashmir

State investigative agency (CBI) report 14 Dec claimed 2 women found dead May died of natural causes; thousands protested report 15 Dec, accused CBI of covering up murder, rape by Indian troops. Army 18 Dec claimed had pulled out 30,000 troops from Kashmir due to decrease in militant attacks. Fazal Haq Qureshi, leader of moderate separatist alliance Hurriyat Conference, severely wounded in 5 Dec attack by unidentified gunmen in Srinagar. Mohammad Kasab, surviving gunman from Nov 2008 Mumbai terror attack, 18 Dec retracted confession, claimed torture by Indian police.

November 2009

Asia

Kashmir

High number of infiltration attempts by militants across LoC continued; Pakistan rejected Indian army’s early month claim Pakistani troops providing cover fire for militants. Indian army killed 3 militants 4 Nov, 6 militants 14 Nov in infiltration attempts. Pakistan govt 23 Nov accussed India of stalling resumption of peace talks after India PM Singh questioned Pakistan govt’s control of own army. Pakistan court 25 Nov charged 7 over involvement in Nov 2008 Mumbai terror attacks.

September 2009

Asia

Kashmir

Infiltration attempts by militants across LoC continued to rise ahead of winter months when border inaccessible; at least 10 soldiers, militants killed in clashes along LoC during Sept. Police 28 Sept killed 3 members of Lashkar-e-Tayyiba militant group in Tral area. Thousands protested in Shopian 9 Sept after leading activist behind calls for investigation into Indian troops’ alleged rape, murder of 2 women in May found dead; state govt 10 Sept said case handed over to state investigative agency CBI. Pakistan, India FMs met 27 Sept, but no agreement on resumption of peace talks.

August 2009

Asia

Kashmir

Dozens killed, mostly militants, in string of attacks leading up to India Independence Day 15 Aug as infiltration attempts by militants across LoC rose significantly during month. Pakistan govt 6 Aug said evidence handed over by India govt against Hafiz Muhammad Saeed, founder of Lashkar-eTayyba militant group accused of Nov 2008 Mumbai terror attack, not strong enough to build case against him. India PM Singh 17 Aug said India govt had “credible information” that Pakistani terrorist groups are planning new attacks on India.

July 2009

Asia

Kashmir

Violent protests over Indian troops’ alleged rape, murder of 2 women in May continued throughout month; state court 15 July ordered arrest of 4 soldiers accused of destroying evidence related to case, investigation ongoing. 3 Islamist militants, 1 police killed in 5 July clashes in Kupwara, Rajouri districts. Surviving gunman from Nov 2008 Mumbai terrorist attack 20 July pled guilty; judge accepted plea, said trial will go on until “outstanding issues” cleared. Pakistani court 25 July adjourned case against 5 accused of involvement in Mumbai attack for 1 month; India PM Singh 17 July had said no resumption of Pakistan peace talks until action taken against Mumbai perpetrators.

June 2009

Asia

Kashmir

Month-long violent protests over 2 women found dead late May, allegedly raped, killed by Indian troops: at least 2 killed, hundreds injured in frequent clashes with police. Taliban suicide bomber 26 June killed 2 troops in Pakistanadministered Kashmir, first such attack in region. 16 June India PM Singh and Pakistan President Zardari in 1st meeting since Nov 2008 Mumbai terrorist attack. Pakistani court 2 June released founder of Lashkar-e-Tayyba (LeT) militant group, Hafiz Muhammad Saeed, said not enough evidence to link him to Mumbai attack. Indian govt 23 June issued arrest warrants for 22 Pakistanis, including Saeed, other LeT members, for allegedly masterminding Mumbai attack.

April 2009

Asia

Kashmir

Separatist alliance All Parties Hurriyat Conference (APHC) 23 Apr called for boycott of national elections; police in response 24 Apr arrested APHC leader. 10 killed, including 2 police and 2 unidentified militants, in 20 Apr Doda district clashes; 5 killed in 21 Apr Poonch district blast. Army 25 Apr accused Pakistan of helping militants infiltrate Kashmir ahead of elections. Surviving gunman from Nov 2008 Mumbai terrorist attack 17 Apr retracted confession, said forced under torture.

March 2009

Asia

Kashmir

Trial of surviving gunman from Nov 2008 Mumbai terrorist attack started 23 March; gunman said he is from Pakistan. 2 alleged Indian Lashkar-e-Tayyaba (LeT) militants also on trial in same case, accused of scouting for attack. Indian, Pakistani troops 21 March exchanged fire across LoC. 17 LeT militants, 5 troops killed in 5-day Shamsbari forest clashes along LoC late month; army 14 March killed 5 LeT militants in Srinagar clash.

February 2009

Asia

Kashmir

Pakistan made formal admission 12 Feb that Nov 2008 Mumbai terrorist attacks planned in part on Pakistani soil, said 8 suspects identified, 6 in custody awaiting related prosecution. Welcoming move, India said more needed to be done. India charged surviving gunman on charges related to Nov Mumbai attacks, along with 35 Pakistanis including serving army officer, members of Lashkar-e-Tayyaba. Charges included waging war on India.

January 2009

Asia

Kashmir

Pakistan Interior minister 14 Jan said some 120 alleged militants arrested in connection to Nov attacks on Mumbai. Intensified military operations in India-controlled Kashmir continued: army reported 4 killed in 9-day gun battle with Muslim militants near Line of Control that ended 8 Jan. Indian govt sharply rejected 21 Jan remarks by UK FM Miliband, visiting New Delhi, that resolution of Kashmir dispute key to South Asian security; Delhi sees Kashmir as domestic issue.

December 2008

Asia

Kashmir

Continued escalations in tensions between India and Pakistan in wake of Nov Mumbai attacks: Pakistan announced redeployment of some troops from tribal areas to Line of Control and international border, but both sides stressed did not want war. Reported airspace violations by Indian aircraft 12-13 Dec, but President Zardari explained as “technical incursion”. Indian FM Mukherjee 22 Dec called Pakistani militants "greatest danger to peace and security” in world. Although composite dialogue put on hold, New Delhi and Islamabad shared information on nuclear programs 2 Jan in rare goodwill gesture. Phased elections in Indian- administered Kashmir, which began 17 Nov, ended 24 Dec with 60% overall turnout amid heavy security crackdown and clashes between security forces and separatists.

November 2008

Asia

Kashmir

Involvement of Pakistan-based militants in 26-28 Nov Mumbai attacks (see India) prompted sharp escalation in tensions with India; India now at war- level security. Initial investigations pointed to involvement of Kashmiri group Lashkar-e-Tayyaba; believed sole surviving attacker Pakistani. Pakistan President Zardari 30 Nov appealed to India for joint approach, said deploying Pakistan military to Kashmir would hurt fight against militants. ISI chief Gen. Pasha due to visit Delhi to assist investigation. Earlier, Zardari in 22 Nov comments to press hinted at “no first use” nuclear weapons policy, called for closer contact across LoC by loosening visa regime. First state polls of 7-stage elections across Jammu & Kashmir held 17, 23 Nov. Initial reports of high turnout (50-60% by district). Separatist tensions high as separatist leaders placed under house arrest, police enforced curfews on Srinagar and other towns, and tens injured in clashes between Muslim protesters and police.

October 2008

Asia

Kashmir

Further political progress between Islamabad and New Delhi, but few improvements on ground. India praised remarks by Pakistan President Zardari that India posed no threat, Kashmir militants represented “terrorists”. National security advisers met in New Delhi 14 Oct, agreed to prepare joint counter-terrorism strategy. Trade across Line of Control began 21 Oct along Srinagar-Muzaffarabad road; crossings limited to 1 day per week. Indian govt 19 Oct announced state polls in Jammu & Kashmir in 7 phases between 17 Nov-24 Dec; All Parties Hurriyat Conference and Jammu Kashmir Liberation Front to boycott.

September 2008

Asia

Kashmir

Communal violence in India-administered Kashmir subsided somewhat after Indian govt temporarily restored disputed land near Hindu Amarnath shrine to Shrine Board. But clashes resumed around 19-20 Sept Srinagar strike by Muslim protesters. In 20 Sept address to parliament, new Pakistan President Asif Zardari pledged peace with India, increased cooperation. Limited exchange of fire across Line of Control (LOC) reported 22 Sept. Zardari and Indian PM Singh agreed to launch new round of Composite Dialogue talks by year’s end, begin cross-LOC trade, open land route for trade between New Delhi and Kabul, and, guided by Indus Water treaty, resolve water disputes.

August 2008

Asia

Kashmir

Violence grew in India-controlled Kashmir, as protests sparked by planned Hindu shrine land transfer resumed. 4 killed in independence rallies 25 Aug in Srinagar, several party leaders detained for curfew violations; over 25 reported killed by Indian police in 2 weeks. Indian security forces killed prominent separatist leader Sheikh Abdul Aziz as he led march towards Line of Control (LoC) 11 Aug; several killed in LoC battles in month.

July 2008

Asia

Kashmir

New ceasefire violations by both sides along Line of Control included reported 12-hour gunfire exchange 28 July, marking month of deterioration in Indo-Pakistani relations. Tensions sparked by deadly, well-organised bombings targeting Indian interests: 7 July blast at Kabul embassy (see Afghanistan), bombings in Bangalore and Ahmedabad 25, 26 July (see India). 21 July composite dialogue talks remained on track, but India said process “under stress”. Violence in India- controlled Jammu & Kashmir (J&K) increased with numerous attacks, including 19 July bus attack that killed at least 9 Indian soldiers. J&K regional govt fell 7 July after resignation of chief minister in wake of June Hindu shrine dispute.

June 2008

Asia

Kashmir

At least 4 killed by police in protests across Indian Jammu & Kashmir after government announced transfer of land adjacent to Hindu Shri Amarnathji shrine. Protesters see transfer as effort to increase number of Hindus in Muslim-dominated Indian Kashmir. Transfer annulled 29 June but protests continued. 4 Pakistani soldiers killed in clash with unknown attackers along Line of Control 19 June. Pakistan, Indian FMs met in New Delhi, 27 June, pledged to continue rapprochement, announced fifth round of Composite Dialogue from 21 July.

May 2008

Asia

Kashmir

India-Pakistan peace talks resumed 20 May after 6-month suspension; signed deal on consular access to prisoners on both sides, otherwise little progress. 8 killed, including 4 civilians, in Samba district police-militants clashes 11 May; first major outbreak of violence in 4 years. Senior Hizbul Mujahideen leader killed by Indian soldiers 28 Apr.

April 2008

Asia

Kashmir

Welcoming return to democracy in Pakistan, Indian PM Singh said expected bilateral ties to improve. Islamabad has already entered into talks to liberalise visa, trade regimes. Indian police claimed arrested senior Hizbul Mujahideen militant Junaid-ul-Islam 3 Apr. Protests against alleged mistreatment of political prisoners continued.

January 2008

Asia

Kashmir

Babir Ahmad, top commander of Huji militant group, killed by security forces in Indian-administered Kashmir; wanted for Nov 2007 Uttar Pradesh bombings. Pakistan President Musharraf said peace talks with India “now on track” 24 Jan; expects progress after Feb Pakistan elections.

December 2007

Asia

Kashmir

Hardline Hizbul Mujahideen announced end to grenade attacks in public places: part of apparent attempt to garner more public support. Indian police killed 3 alleged members of that group who barricaded themselves in mosque in Palnoo, Kulgam district, 23 December.

November 2007

Asia

Kashmir

Indian High Commissioner’s house in Islamabad broken into 12 November, prompting protest by New Delhi. Move came after India expressed concern at Pakistan’s 3 November imposition of martial law.

October 2007

Asia

Kashmir

In step towards normalisation, commercial lorries crossed India-Pakistan border for first time since partition at Punjab’s Wagah border post 1 October. Pakistan President Musharraf announced political and administrative reforms for Northern Areas 23 October, giving regional assembly greater say in regional administration; move rejected in Northern Areas as attempt to bypass real political reform.

September 2007

Asia

Kashmir

Pakistan registered formal disapproval 17 September after India announced it would lead tourist expeditions on disputed Siachen glacier.

August 2007

Asia

Kashmir

Former senior policeman shot dead 31 August north of Srinagar, first high-profile killing of year. Hizbul Mujahedin group claimed responsibility. Indian army reported killing 10 militants in Kashmir and border area 27 August.

July 2007

Asia

Kashmir

Little progress at security talks between India and Pakistan cut short 4 July by violence at Islamabad Red Mosque. Summer increase in low-level violence included several attacks by suspected separatist militants on Hindu pilgrims. Indian Defence Secretary Shekhar Dutt recommended relocation of 20,000 troops from private and civic property in Jammu & Kashmir. Proposal would maintain current levels of troops involved in counter- militancy efforts along Line of Control.

June 2007

Asia

Kashmir

Normalisation process slowed due to ongoing political turmoil in Pakistan. India said it would maintain troop levels along border of Jammu and Kashmir, citing increase in cross-border militancy.

May 2007

Asia

Kashmir

Talks in Islamabad 17-18 May on Sir Creek boundary dispute failed to produce any agreement after exchange of survey maps. General strike observed 21 May in Indian Kashmir to mark anniversary of killings of 2 separatist leaders. Several separatists and Indian troops killed in clashes along Line of Control.

April 2007

Asia

Kashmir

Indian authorities said violence in India- controlled Jammu & Kashmir fell two-thirds in 2006 to lowest level in 17 years. No agreement in 11th round of talks between New Delhi and Islamabad on Siachen Glacier issue. New Delhi hosted 24 April roundtable on Kashmir, but separatist parties stayed away as talks skirted subject of territory. Thousands protested in Srinagar 16 April in response to continued civilian casualties at hands of Indian police forces.

March 2007

Asia

Kashmir

Hizbul Mujahideen member “Yaseen” killed by Indian forces 2 March. As protests continued over security force killings, New Delhi set up expert panel to consider reduction in Kashmir troop levels and revision to Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act that grants broad powers of detention. Defence ministers’ talks on Siachen glacier due 6 April in Rawalpindi.

February 2007

Asia

Kashmir

India and Pakistan proceeded with dialogue process despite 18 February bombing of Lahore-Delhi train that killed over 60. Nuclear risk reduction pact signed during Pakistan FM Mahmood Kasuri’s visit to Delhi 21 February, but terror attack, attributed by some Indian security officials to Pakistan-based jihadis, overshadowed visit. India said Pakistan must end all “cross-border terrorism” if dialogue process to succeed. In shift, head of separatist APHC moderate faction Umar Farooq called for militants to support political solution, but said Indian troop withdrawal should be first move. Strike in Srinagar 6 February shut down city in protest at recent uncovering of Indian Army and police role in at least 5 “encounter killings” of civilians; 8 police arrested. Lashkar-e-Toiba commander Abu Talha reported killed by Indian police 28 February.

January 2007

Asia

Kashmir

Continued engagement between Delhi and Islamabad, but no concrete progress on Kashmir sticking points. Indian FM Pranab Mukherjee reported “positive” visit to Islamabad 13 January but PM Singh said movement on Siachen Glacier dispute would be “premature”. Next talks due in March.

December 2006

Asia

Kashmir

Pakistan President Musharraf mooted plan for autonomous Kashmir in exchange for Indian concessions. Plan would see Pakistan give up territorial claim and referendum demand if India accepted granting region autonomy within existing territorial borders, joint phased military withdrawal allowing "soft border" with free movement across Line of Control, and "joint supervisory mechanism" to govern cross- border issues. Musharraf ruled out full independence. PM Singh responded indirectly with messages of peace, but Delhi appears reluctant to move forward without Pakistani efforts to halt cross-border terrorist attacks. U.S. President Bush signed law 18 December allowing U.S. nuclear sales to India; no sales allowed to Pakistan.

November 2006

Asia

Kashmir

Foreign secretary-level talks between India and Pakistan 14-16 November yielded little progress on Kashmir sticking points. Both countries agreed to implement mechanism to improve communication on anti-terrorism measures; agreement not expected to produce much shared intelligence or policy, but sign that normalisation process not derailed by July Mumbai train bombings.

October 2006

Asia

Kashmir

Mixed messages over Delhi-Islamabad dialogue following India’s implication of Pakistani security services in Mumbai train bombings. First talks since July bombings due 13 November. Newly appointed foreign minister Pranab Mukherjee said peace with Pakistan desirable and that India would share “certain” evidence over bombings with Islamabad, while PM Singh warned 18 October that further dialogue would be strained unless Pakistan took greater action on terrorism. Violence escalated in Srinagar with series of clashes between separatists and Indian security forces: 10 killed in 24-hour gun battle 5 October after attack on security camp, claimed by Al-Mansurian militants. After string of protests in Indian-controlled Kashmir, Indian government postponed execution of militant Kashmiri Afzal Guru pending review of clemency appeal.

September 2006

Asia

Kashmir

Indian PM Singh and Pakistani President Musharraf agreed at Havana Non-Aligned Summit 16 September to resume normalisation talks, and set up joint mechanism against terror; foreign secretary-level discussions in Delhi to be first step. Singh said process success would depend on Pakistan’s efforts to end cross-border attacks. Talks jeopardised 29 September when Mumbai police alleged Pakistani intelligence service ISI assisted Lashkar-e-Tayyaba group in planning July train bombings. Hizb-ul-Mujahideen militants and government failed to agree Ramadan ceasefire, violence continued in and around Srinagar: 7 killed on 25 September.

August 2006

Asia

Kashmir

India and Pakistan engaged in tit-for-tat expulsion of diplomats in moves reminiscent of pre-normalisation process antagonism. Clashes continued throughout month with surge of grenade attacks in run up to 15 August Indian independence day. 5 Pakistan-based militants killed in attempt to cross Line of Control 16 August. Pakistan alleged violations of Line of Control ceasefire by Indian forces. Further 9 killed, including 3 soldiers, in security operations in Kulgam-Qazigund area. Lashkar-e-Toiba militant allegedly linked to 11 July Mumbai bombings charged with establishing terror network in Mumbai.

July 2006

Asia

Kashmir

India halted normalisation process with Pakistan after 11 July Mumbai bombings. Further progress conditional on tangible Pakistani moves against banned jihadi groups like Lashkar-e-Tayyaba and Hizbul Mujihideen. India captured Mudassir Gojri, top militant commander of Lashkar-e-Tayyaba blamed for numerous tourist killings including July attacks that killed 8. Suspected militants shot dead 4 Hindus in Indian Kashmir 13 July. Sakina Itoo, leader of National Conference party, survived 8 July grenade attack in which 5 supporters killed. New government installed in Pakistani-administered Kashmir after elections opposition parties claimed were rigged. Sardar Attiq Ahmed Khan, head of All Jammu and Kashmir Muslim Conference, sworn in as PM 24 July.

June 2006

Asia

Kashmir

Sporadic violence continued throughout Indian-controlled Kashmir. 8 militants reportedly killed attempting to cross into Indian controlled territory 30 June. Previously militants attacked villagers in Udhampur district, killing 1 and mutilating 2 on suspicion of being informers. 8 lndian labourers from Bihar shot dead by suspected militants in Anantnag district. All Parties Hurriyat Conference called protest against alleged desecration of Koran and mosque by Indian security forces: 2 killed in demonstrations. Second bus service began linking Indian and Pakistani controlled areas but mutual accusations over failed prisoner swap dampened optimism.

May 2006

Asia

Kashmir

Violence continued in Indian-controlled Kashmir in apparent reaction to positive talks between Indian PM Singh and main moderate faction of APHC that set up unprecedented framework for future talks. Violence increased before 24-25 May roundtable in Srinagar with grenade attacks and suicide bomber killing 15. Militants attacked Congress party rally in Srinagar while warning given to APHC of “dire consequences” for participation in roundtable prompting APHC withdrawal 22 May. Police reportedly found bodies of 4 Muslims in Baramulla district, allegedly killed for being police informers. Separate India/Pakistan talks on Siachen glacier and Sir Creek border disputes ended without breakthrough.

April 2006

Asia

Kashmir

Upsurge in attacks by separatists in first major violence since November 2005. 22 Hindu villagers killed by militants in Doda district 1 May. Wave of Srinagar grenade attacks 14 April and gunbattles in Srinagar and Jammu and Kashmir killed at least 17. Kashmiri radical separatist groups claimed responsibility. Senior opposition politician Ali Mohammad Naik wounded and 2 guards killed 17 April in attack claimed by Islamic Front militants. By-elections held for 4 seats for Jammu and Kashmir state assembly. 3 politicians reportedly killed by insurgents. Indian PM Manmohan Singh to meet Kashmiri separatist leaders in New Delhi early May.

March 2006

Asia

Kashmir

India and Pakistan announced schedule for third round of composite dialogue. Meetings began 28 March and will conclude June followed by 2 high-level review sessions July. Pakistani accusations of Indian inaction on Kashmir and Indian calls for end to cross-border terrorism soured atmosphere. Indian PM Manmohan Singh made conciliatory speech while inaugurating bus service 24 March. Clashes continued between security forces and militants while Lashkar-e-Kahar militants claimed responsibility for bombings in Indian Uttar Pradesh state.

February 2006

Asia

Kashmir

Confidence-building  measures  continued  with resumption of train service across Thar desert after 40-year suspension. Indian PM Manmohan Singh called conference of Indian Kashmiri politicians and separatist leaders for 25 February; many declined calling talks “premature”. Strikes in Indian-controlled Kashmir followed fatal shooting of 4 boys 22 February, apparently in crossfire between security forces and separatists, while further separatist violence killed 5 next day. Clashes erupted between Buddhists and Muslims in Ladakh 8 February, after torn pages of Koran found near mosque in Kargil. India reportedly withdrew 5,000 troops from Indian- controlled Kashmir in response to improving security situation.

January 2006

Asia

Kashmir

Indian Foreign Secretary Shyam Saran and Pakistani counterpart, Riaz Mohammad Khan, met in Delhi for third round of bilateral normalisation dialogue 17 January and agreed to sustain process. Cross-border travel links increased with additional bus and truck services; further bus link between Sikh holy cities of Amritsar and Nankana Sahib, and rail link between Rajasthan state and Sindh province to start in February. Indian troops reportedly shot dead senior leader of militant group Lashkar-e-Taiba responsible for series of blasts in New Delhi in October 2005. Clashes between Indian security forces and militants crossing Line of Control into Indian-controlled territory killed 14.

December 2005

Asia

Kashmir

Latest confidence-building measure, “Punjab Express” bus between Lahore and Amritsar, introduced 11 December. Next round of official-level talks to discuss peace and security issues, including Kashmir, due January. Violence continued with 9 killed in clashes near Srinagar 14 December and Rajouri district of Jammu 16 December.

November 2005

Asia

Kashmir

24 Indian Kashmiris became first in 60 years to cross to Pakistani side but growing dissatisfaction more not allowed after 8 October earthquake. Pakistani PM Shaukat Aziz and Indian counterpart Manmohan Singh discussed normalisation process in side meeting at SAARC summit. All 5 promised crossing-points officially opened. 3 profile Srinagar attacks killed 14, 16-23 November.

October 2005

Asia

Kashmir

Region devastated by 8 October earthquake; over 55,000 killed (36,000 in Pakistan-controlled Kashmir) and 3 million homeless. India and Pakistan agreed to open Line of Control dividing Kashmir from 7 November to allow relief supplies and survivors to cross. Truce called by main Muslim rebel alliance in India-controlled Kashmir, United Jihad Council, but sporadic violence continued. Junior Education Minister of India-controlled Kashmir and 2 bodyguards killed 18 October in Srinagar by Islamic Front militants. Indian and Pakistani FMs signed security cooperation agreement 3 October in Islamabad: includes ballistic missile test notification pledge and hotline between maritime security forces. Agreement also reached to resolve dispute over frontier Siachen glacier in Kashmir within 3 months.

September 2005

Asia

Kashmir

Talks between Indian PM Singh and Pakistani President Musharraf on sidelines of UN General Assembly reaffirmed commitment to “peaceful settlement of all issues” but failed to advance stalled negotiations. Singh held talks with moderate faction of All Parties Hurriyat Conference separatist alliance 5 September; vowed to reduce Indian troops if violence and infiltration end. Politicians from Indian- and Pakistan-controlled Kashmir held direct talks: separatist leaders from both sides yet to be allowed to join official peace process. Deadly clashes continued between Indian security forces and militants in Indian-administered Kashmir. Foreign ministers of Pakistan and India to meet 3 October.

August 2005

Asia

Kashmir

India and Pakistan agreed to swap hundreds of prisoners after 2-day talks as part of ongoing peace process. Indian PM Singh and Pakistani President Musharraf to meet 14 September on sidelines of UN summit in New York in first face- to-face talks since April. Singh announced would meet with moderate faction of All Parties Hurriyat Conference for first time 5 September in Delhi. Pakistan tested cruise missile with 500 km range 11 August; did not notify Indian officials, claiming test notification agreement with India signed days earlier did not cover cruise missiles. Series of grenade attacks on Indian security forces in Sopor, north of Srinagar, wounded 14.

July 2005

Asia

Kashmir

Indian PM Manmohan Singh warned rising violence in Kashmir and 5 July Ayodhya shrine militant attacks (see India) could jeopardise peace talks. Security forces in Indian-administered Kashmir reportedly killed 13 infiltrators across Line of Control in Gulmarg region. Operations continued against militants in Gurez area. Srinagar car bomb, claimed by Hizbul Mujahideen militant group, killed 4 soldiers and civilian 20 July. Other incidents included 24-hour stand-off between militants and security forces in Srinagar ending with death of 2 militants 30 July. Indian security forces’ fatal shooting of 3 teenaged boys mistaken for militants sparked mass protests and 4-day strike Srinagar from 24 July. Indian and Pakistani experts to meet 5-6 August for third round talks on military issues and nuclear CBMs.

June 2005

Asia

Kashmir

Moderate faction of Kashmiri separatist Hurriyat Conference alliance (APHC) indicated desire to resume talks with Indian government after 2 week visit to Pakistan and talks with President Pervez Musharraf. But signs of disagreement among APHC leaders and counterparts in Pakistan- administered Kashmir on province’s future. Violence continued: 23 killed in separate car bombs 13, 24 June; other incidents included killing of 3 civilians in their home 30 June. Pakistan and India concluded round of talks on dam dispute 29 June - to have high-level contact early July at Shanghai Cooperation Organization summit in Kazakhstan (as observer nations).

May 2005

Asia

Kashmir

Upsurge of violence since resumption of bus route between India and Pakistan across Line Of Control. Militant attacks in Srinagar 11-12 May killed 4, injured 84, including many school children. Separatist leaders from Indian-held Kashmir agreed to Pakistan’s invitation to discuss future of region 2 June, though hardline faction of All Parties Hurriyat Conference refused to attend; 17 killed in clashes ahead of visit. Rise in militancy dampened hopes New Delhi would reduce troop numbers.

April 2005

Asia

Kashmir

Jubilation of Kashmiris on both sides of Line of Control as bus service, suspended since partition in 1947, resumed 7 April. Separatist groups attempted to intimidate passengers: attacked passengers’ housing in Srinagar; exploded landmines on route; and labelled those boarding bus “traitors”. Meeting between President Pervez Musharraf and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in New Delhi 17 April resulted in joint statement calling peace process “irreversible”, promised to work towards “soft border” - opening meeting points for divided families and boosting trade and travel across frontier. At least 40 killed in separate clashes between militants and security forces. Head of largest militant group, Hizbul Mujahideen, reportedly ready for peace talks if invited by New Delhi.

March 2005

Asia

Kashmir

India/Pakistan normalisation process continued amid signs of Pakistani impatience over lack of progress over Kashmir and differences over U.S. sale of F-16s to Pakistan. Over 500 prisoners, mostly Gujarat fishermen, released by Pakistan, while New Delhi extended invitation to President Pervez Musharraf for 17 April cricket international and meeting with Indian PM Manmohan Singh. Srinagar/Muzaffarabad bus link due to start 7 April. Sporadic attacks by separatist militants (opposed to bus link) on security forces continued.

February 2005

Asia

Kashmir

Indian Foreign Minister Natwar Singh and Pakistani Foreign Minister Khurshid Mehmood Kasuri announced confidence-building measures after 16 February Islamabad talks, including bus service between Srinagar and Muzaffarabad (to start 7 April) and agreement on cross-border Iran-India-Pakistan “peace pipeline”. Local elections held for first time in Jammu and Kashmir, voter turnout low due to separatist boycott calls. Some violence despite considerable security presence. Al-Mansurain militant group claimed responsibility for 24 February suicide attack on Srinagar government complex, killing 7.

January 2005

Asia

Kashmir

India/Pakistan normalisation process stalled as Pakistan asked World Bank (broker of Indus Waters Treaty) to appoint neutral arbitrator to decide whether India’s construction of Baglihar hydro-power dam on Chenab river in Jammu and Kashmir should go ahead. Tensions rose across line of control after ceasefire violation accusations from both sides. Clashes between militants and Indian security forces continued. Indian foreign minister Natwar Singh to visit Pakistan 15 February.

December 2004

Asia

Kashmir

Indian and Pakistani officials met Islamabad 14-15 December to discuss confidence building measures related to nuclear and conventional arms - no formal agreement reached to notify each other of missile tests (practice currently followed informally). Foreign secretaries met 27-28 December with no sign of progress over Kashmir. Pakistan test-fired medium- range surface-to-surface “Hatf-IV Shaheen-I” missile 8 December. India tested surface-to-surface version of its supersonic “Brahmos” missile 21 December. Talks 7-8 December on emotive issue of bus service between Srinagar and Muzaffarabad failed to reach agreement - discussions to continue. Spate of violence in run-up to talks left over 20 dead.

November 2004

Asia

Kashmir

India began limited withdrawal of troops from Kashmir 17 November, citing fall in guerrilla violence. Indian PM Manmohan Singh visited Kashmir Valley same day, ruled out any redrawing of India's borders or further division of Kashmir as suggested by Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf in his (informal) October proposals. Pakistani PM Shaukat Aziz met Singh New Delhi 24 November; agreed to continue talks. Eleven rebels and 3 Indian soldiers killed 6 November in several attacks, including grenade assault in Srinagar during visit by India's home minister Shivraj Patil. Kashmiri separatist All Parties Hurriyat Conference (APHC) repeated longstanding demand their leaders be allowed to go to Pakistan to meet separatist leaders before formal talks occur. Indian soldiers shot dead 5 militants 3 November after mosque siege 45 km south of Srinagar.

October 2004

Asia

Kashmir

Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf made unexpected public calls for “rethink” on Kashmir; ideas included defining, demilitarising and changing status of areas of Pakistan- and Indian-administered sections of Kashmir and some form of joint India-Pakistan or U.N. control. Indian official reaction muted; received mixed reactions from domestic and Indian press. Talks between Pakistan and India on proposal to start bus link in Kashmir set for 7-8 December in New Delhi. Team of Pakistani journalists visited Indian-administered Kashmir 4-6 October for first time since 1947. Sporadic violence continued included killing of former Kashmir minister 21 October; suicide bomb attack on Indian army convoy 9 October, killing 5; and failed assassination attempt on Jammu and Kashmir opposition leader and former chief minister Farooq Abdullah. Pakistani PM Shaukat Aziz to meet Indian PM Manmohan Singh in November in capacity as chairman of South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation. Pakistan tested nuclear-capable “Hatf-V Ghauri” missile 12 October; India tested medium-range nuclear-capable “Prithvi-III” missile 27 October.

September 2004

Asia

Kashmir

Indian PM Manmohan Singh and Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf met for first time on sidelines of UN General Assembly in New York 24 September. Both leaders pledged commitment to dialogue. Foreign ministers previously met New Dehli 5-6 September; claimed modest progress, mainly on normalisation process. Major obstacles remain - Pakistan’s insistence on time frame for resolving dispute, India’s insistence Pakistan do more to stop cross- border infiltration of militants. Violent clashes continued, including incidents 18 September that killed 18.

August 2004

Asia

Kashmir

Clashes between separatists and security forces continued as talks between India and Pakistan stalled. India’s ruling Congress party repeatedly expressed disappointment over what it says is Islamabad’s failure to curb Kashmiri guerrillas. Ten killed – including Manzoorul Islam, head of Jamiat-ul-Mujahideen separatist group – during 19 August visit by Indian President Abdul Kalam to Jammu and Srinagar. Further violence killed at least 18 in separate incidents. Possible talks between Indian government and Kashmiri separatist All Parties Hurriyat (Freedom) Conference (APHC) faltered at outset as government insisted next round should take place “within” constitution: rejected by APHC.

July 2004

Asia

Kashmir

Violence worsened in run-up to Indo-Pakistan peace talks; over 200 killed including numerous civilians. Indian Foreign Minister Natwar Singh met Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf 23 July. India expressed disappointment with Pakistani statement stressing “time-frame” for settling Kashmir dispute. Current round of talks to culminate in New Delhi foreign ministers’ meeting 5-6 September.

June 2004

Asia

Kashmir