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Since 1989, a violent, separatist insurgency and the ensuing crackdown by Indian forces have killed an estimated 68,000 people. Although the armed rebellion is largely suppressed, the region remains heavily militarized, with checkpoints along main roads, hundreds of thousands of troops stationed here and harsh emergency laws still in force, creating further friction with the restive population.

This summer’s demonstrations erupted after a police probe in June found Indian soldiers killed three Kashmiri civilians in a staged gunbattle, then claimed their victims were militants to get a reward. The army responded by suspending two officers.

In a protest following that incident, a teenager was killed after being hit in the head by a tear-gas canister fired by police. Since then, the troubled Himalayan region has witnessed near-daily demonstrations and clashes.