[Editor’s note: The map uses Natural Earth vector and raster imagery to parse the mixed administration and claims in the former princely state of Jammu and Kashmir.]
“Many young Kashmiris today just want a good life,” said Ansari, who has 300 employees. “I have more than 10,000 résumés on my desk. I wish I could hire them all.”
A new generation of Kashmiris is weary of five decades of tensions over the future of this Himalayan region, which has been a flash point for India and Pakistan, both nuclear powers that claim Kashmir as their own.
But Kashmiris have been caught in the diplomatic dilemma facing the Obama administration as it tries to persuade Pakistan to take on a stronger role fighting Islamist extremists and simultaneously seeks to improve relations with India, Pakistan’s arch foe.
Many Kashmiris celebrated when President Obama took office nearly a year ago, because he seemed to favor a more robust approach to bring stability to Kashmir, where human rights groups estimate that as many as 100,000 people have died in violence and dozens of Pakistan-backed militant groups have sprung up. At one point, the Obama administration contemplated appointing former president Bill Clinton as a special envoy to the region.