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Guides: Kashmir

Last Updated: Thursday May 23 2002 15:39 GMT

Why is Kashmir so important?

An Indian soldier on the border at Kashmir
Both India and Pakistan claim the mountainous region of Kashmir belongs to them.

The Pakistanis say that Kashmir should have become part of Pakistan in 1947 because most of its population are Muslims.

India claims Kashmir because the Maharaja in Kashmir handed over various powers to India in 1947.

The people living there have never had the chance to vote to have their say about what should happen, called a referendum.

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