India-Pakistan: June 3, 2003

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In Kashmir, there is panic among the nomadic Gujjar community. In the past year, 328 of the 485 civilians killed by Islamic rebels have been Gujjars. Although the Gujjars, nomadic herders, are Moslem, apparently the rebels feel that the Gujjars act as informants for the government. Gujjars have also refused to aid, or join, the rebels.

The Pakistani government has a crises brewing in the Northwest Frontier Province. This is a largely tribal Pushtun area that began using Sharia (Islamic) law today. Islamic radicals control the provincial legislature. The Taliban have bases along the Afghan border and the provincial government opposes attempts to root out those camps. Afghanistan and America are applying pressure to do something. But taking military action could lead to a civil war in the province. That would not be unique, but it would be messy and expensive. 

In Kashmir, rebel violence left three dead. Indian and Pakistani artillery exchanged fire along the Line of Control in Kashmir, leaving eight Pakistani civilians dead. 

 

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