December 11, 2006Foreign Affairs

A fractional part of Pakistan

They never said it was an integral part

This is an archived blog post from The Acorn.

The Pakistani foreign office has declared that it never did claim that Kashmir was its integral part. That’s good to hear. But what exactly is Pakistan referring to?

Most likely, it is referring to the Kashmir valley and the portion of the erstwhile Jammu & Kashmir state that is now administered by India. It also appears to be referring to what it calls Azad Kashmir, which as the name suggests and the reality denies (via The Glasshouse), is free of Pakistan. Azad may not be its integral part, but it might just well be its colony.

Pakistan could also be referring to the 5180 sq km of territory that it ceded to China as part of the boundary agreement it signed in 1963. That swathe of territory in the vicinity of the Karakorum pass is now integral part of the People’s Republic of China. The latest admission proves India’s contention that the ceding of territory was illegal”. It is clear, though, that China won’t ask for a refund, preferring instead to keep the goods.

Pakistan, though, is certainly not referring to Gilgit, Hunza, Nagar, Baltistan and other areas that it calls Northern Areas. The Northern Areas are in a legal and constitutional limbo: its people have no political rights in Pakistan (not even what little the people in official provinces have in theory). The story of their repression by the Pakistani army is hardly ever told.

Tailpiece: Kashmir”, the General had declared, runs in our blood”. Whatever.



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