26 July, 2021

A Changed Perspective

With world opinion now in its favour, India needs to rethink its approach to Kashmir

A Changed Perspective
Nawaz Sharif's hastily-arranged three-hour conference with President Clinton on the US Independence Day holiday produced a short, carefully-crafted joint press release and cautious sighs of relief. The basic deal had two parts: Sharif would "take concrete steps" to restore the sanctity of the Line of Control, and once this had been done, President Clinton would "take a personal interest" in resumed Indo-Pakistan efforts to resolve their differences, "including Kashmir". In other words, Pakistan would call back the infiltrators from the Kargil area, in the expectation that the US would put Kashmir on its agenda in some unspecified way.

What does the Nawaz-Clinton statement mean for India-Pakistan relations, and what does it tell us, if anything, about the role the international community might seek in dealing with the subcontinent?

For Indo-Pak relations, the key question is what happens now. The chorus of protest from a variety of mujahideen-oriented political figures and retired generals makes clear that Sharif will pay a political price for...

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