Jonathan Manthorpe

From The Vancouver Sun: Youth Revolt in Kashmir…

“After more than 60 years of dispute and conflict — even to the brink of nuclear war — over the Himalayan foothills territory of Kashmir, India and Pakistan have been caught off guard by an outpouring of disgust by the region’s people themselves.

As of Tuesday, 59 people have been killed in more than two months of sustained mass demonstrations and riots by teenagers and young men in the Indian-occupied southern portion of Kashmir.

In almost all cases, those killed have been shot by the Indian security forces who have come under attack by the stone-throwing mobs.

The uprising, which resembles the anti-Israeli “intifada” of the early 2000s by young Palestinians except there is no evidence of prompting by politicians, stems from an incident in late April.”

So what Kashmir is seeing now is an entirely domestic and apparently spontaneous uprising among young people.

It’s a very different upheaval from those that have marked the terrible history of Kashmir since its ownership became a focus of dispute between New Delhi and Islamabad on the separation of predominantly Muslim Pakistan from constitutionally secular India in 1947.”

There was a familiar demonstration of popular frustration on Sunday when a policeman threw a shoe at Abdullah during a ceremony to mark the anniversary of Indian independence.

Of particular irritation to the public appears to be Abdullah’s failure to repeal, as promised, the hated Armed Forces Special Powers Act, which shields security forces from investigation and prosecution.”


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