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.
Their recent dialogue process provides the best chance yet for bilateral peace and regional stability, but Pakistan and India must still overcome serious mistrust among hardliners in their security elites.
Even if India and Pakistan appear willing to allow more interaction across the Line of Control (LOC) that separates the parts of Kashmir they administer, any Kashmir-based dialogue will fail if they do not put its inhabitants first.
When the third round of the normalisation talks concludes in July 2006, India and Pakistan will be no closer than when they began the process in February 2004 to resolving differences, including over Kashmir.
The agreement between Pakistan's president, Pervez Musharraf, and India's new prime minister, Manmohan Singh, to continue talks on all contentious issues including Kashmir has inspired optimism about reduced tensions in South Asia.
For half a century Kashmir has been the major issue of contention between India and Pakistan.
More than five decades after independence, Pakistan is no closer to a resolution with India of the dispute over Kashmir.