India-Pakistan: Two neighbours edging closer to war

Timeline of crisis

The brutal animosity between Pakistan and India date back to when Muhammad bin Qasim (672 CE), a 17-year old Muslim invader managed to reach Sindh.

Qasim invasion, was followed by a series of battles that took place between the Umayyad Caliphate and the Indian kingdoms;after the Umayyad campaign in the first half of the 8th century CE.

During the Muslim conquests of the Indian subcontinent, Indian-origin religions were persecuted by Muslim rulers.

Muslim rulers massacred Hindus, Jains and Buddhists while attacking temples and monasteries, while also forcing them to convert including on the battlefield. Most of the great temples in Northern Indian subcontinent were destroyed during the Muslim rule.

The British invasion of the India-subcontinent ended the Mughal Muslim rule in 1857, after deposing the last mughal emperor.

Britain in August 1947 ended it colonial rule in India after 200 years of what could be described as the worst thing that could ever happen to any country.

The British rule collapsed after the World War II. British India and Great Britain began dealing with serious economic stress caused by the War.

British India was a country populated by different ethnic and religious group.

India Independent from Britain, led to an Inter-communal violence between Hindus, Sikhs and Muslims leading to between 500,000 and 1 million casualties, subsequently leading to the partition of India.

The two self-Independent countries of Pakistan and India legally came into existence on the midnight of 14th and 15th of August 1947.

The Partition didn’t solve its entire problem as Kashmir, a Muslim-majority kingdom ruled by a Hindu, became an issue between India and Partition, which eventually led to a war in October 1947.

Tribal Islamic forces with support from the army of Pakistan attacked and occupied parts of the Kingdom, forcing the Hindu rulership to sign a deal acceding to Kashmir to be ruled by India, which led to it receiving military protection from India.

A UN-brokered cease-fire ends the war in a year with Kashmir divided between India ad and Pakistan leading to a formal cease-fire declared at 23:59 on the night of 1 January 1949.

India gained control of about two-thirds of the state, where as whereas Pakistan gained roughly a third of Kashmir.

The UN Security Council resolution called for a referendum in which Kashmiris would determine their future; but the vote never took place.

In 1965, a second war begins over Kashmir, ending a month later in another UN-mandated ceasefire, after Pakistan forces tried infiltrating into Jammu and Kashmir to precipitate an insurgency against rule by India, which India retaliated by launching a full-scale military attack on West Pakistan.

The seventeen-day war caused thousands of casualties on both sides and witnessed the largest engagement of armoured vehicles and the largest tank battle since World War II. The hostilities between the two countries ended after a ceasefire was declared following diplomatic intervention by the Soviet Union and USA.

In 1971, political crisis between Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, Leader of East Pakistan, and Yahya Khan and Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, leaders of West Pakistan led to a civil war that had India supporting the secessionists in East Pakistan.

The war ends with the creation of Bangladesh after the surrender of more than 90,000 Pakistani military and civilians.

India in 1974 conducted a nuclear test, becoming the first nation to do so that's not a permanent UN Security Council member.

Armed resistance to Indian rule in Kashmir began in 1989. India accuses Pakistan of giving weapons and training to the fighters. Pakistan says it offers only "moral and diplomatic" support.

India after it 1974 nuclear test, detonated five nuclear devices in tests in 1998, which Pakistan also immediately followed by detonating six, the same year.

In 1999, Pakistani troops and Kashmiri fighters infiltrated a cross the Line of Control (LoC) and occupied Indian territory mostly in the Kargil district, Himalayan peaks.

India launches air and ground strikes retaken most of the ridges that were encroached by the infiltrators, which saw 4,000 Pakistani troops killed in the operation.

The war ended in July 1999, after a led US brokers peace led to organised hostilities in the Kargil district ceased.

Insurgents in October 2001 attacked the legislature building in Kashmir, killing 38 people.

Gunmen in December 2001, attacked India's Parliament, killing 14. India blames militant groups Lashkar-e-Taiba and Jaish-e-Muhammad, and deploys troops to its western frontier with Pakistan. The standoff ends in October 2002 after international mediation.

A train service between India and Pakistan in February 2007, the Samjhauta Express, is bombed in northern India, killing 68.

November 2008, gunmen attacked Mumbai, killing 166 people, which India blamed on Pakistan-based terror group Lashkar-e-Taiba.

February 14, 2019, a suicide bomber crashes a car packed with 300kg of explosives into a convoy of Central Reserve Police Forces (CRPF), killing more than 40 Indian paramilitary personnel, and injuring at least 70.

The terror attack took place in India controlled Pulwama, about 20km from Srinagar, capital of Jammu and Kashmir territory.

February 26, 2019, 12 Indian Air Force jets violated Pakistan airspace by dropping bombs in what it calls a 'preemptive strike' on suspected Jaish-e-Mohammed camps across the Line of Control (LoC) in Muzafarabad sector at 3.30am.

Pakistan army spokesperson Major General Asif Ghafoor confirms that the Indian Air Force (IAF) violated the Line of Control (LoC).

It was the first such aircraft movement across the Line of Control between India and Pakistan, and carried out attacks for the first time since 1971 in the latest development since deadly Pulwama suicide attack in which

February 27, Pakistani jets violated Indian airspace and dropped bombs.

Pakistan claims it has shot down 2 Indian Air Force jets, arresting Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman.

He was released on the 1st of March 2019, in which Prime Minister of Pakistan Imran Khan announced his return as a goodwill gesture aimed at de-escalating rising tensions with India.

LAC vs LOC: What's the difference?

Line of Control (LoC) is the de facto, or effective border between India- and Pakistan-controlled parts of Kashmir.

The Line of Actual Control (LAC) defines the boundary separating parts of Kashmir controlled by India and Pakistan, as well as the boundary between India and China.

Source: Wikipedia, BBC, Aljazeera, Times of India, Gulf News.

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