21 Denning L.J. 1 (2009)
The Creation Story of Kashmiri People: The Right to Self-Determination

handle is hein.journals/denlj21 and id is 3 raw text is: THE DENNING LAW JOURNAL

The Denning Law Journal 2009 Vol 21 pp 1-25
Fozia N Lone *
If a group wishes to exercise the right to self-determination, they need to
establish that they are a people within the international law definition,
thereby triggering the ability to claim this right. Thus, the definition of the
term people is the key in cases of self-determination and always posits
difficult challenges. This article aims to determine whether the Kashmiri
people could be identified as a group that fits within the contemporary non-
exhaustive definition of people. Having ascended from the level of subjects
of an autocratic rule to victims of human rights violations, are Kashmiris now
in a position to exercise a right to self-determination?
The territory of Kashmir, located in the foothills of Himalayan mountain
range in South Asia, was until 1947 under the paramountcy of the British
Crown as the Princely State of Jammu and Kashmir. The British
decolonisation of the Indian subcontinent became instrumental in creating a
disorder that pushed Kashmir into the throes of an unending war. Britain
decided to grant independence to British India; however, they did not
adequately define the relationship between the Princely States and the new
Dominions, i.e. India and Pakistan.1 Once the British paramountcy was
withdrawn in 1947, the territory of Princely State of Kashmir became a
continuous source of tension between India and Pakistan. This territory
ignited four wars between these newly formed nations and has been described
as the most dangerous place in the world by the former US President Bill
* Assistant Professor, City University of Hong Kong & Honorary Research Assistant,
University of Aberdeen.
1 H Hodson The Great Divide - Britain India Pakistan (London: Hutchinson, 1969).

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