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Pakistanis Hold Rally Near Indian Border


Protesters rally in Kashmir's summer capital, Srinagar.

Protesters rally in Kashmir's summer capital, Srinagar.

Thousands of Pakistanis have rallied in a town on the border with India in a show of patriotism amid rising tensions between New Delhi and Islamabad over alleged cease-fire violations in the disputed Himalayan region of Kashmir.

The turnout for the famous daily flag-lowering ceremony in the town of Wagha took on extra meaning because of a flare-up over Kashmir, which is claimed by both Pakistan and India and is currently split between the two countries.

A 13-year-old cease-fire in Kashmir has been tested recently as each side blames the other for a series of deadly violations of the fragile truce.

The Pakistani Army said in a statement on October 1 that "Indian forces once again resorted to unprovoked firing and shelling across the Line of Control at Chamb sector."

An Indian Defense Ministry spokesman said Indian troops responded after Pakistani troops fired across the demarcation line in the Akhnoor sector of India’s state of Jammu and Kashmir early on October 1.

The latest accusations follow India's charge that Pakistan supported militants in Kashmir that New Delhi said was behind a September 18 attack on an Indian base in the region that killed 17 soldiers.

India responded on September 29 with a deadly attack on what it called a "terrorist launching pad" it said was used by Kashmir-based fighters.

India and Pakistan have fought three wars since they gained independence from Britain seven decades ago, two of them over Kashmir.

Based on reporting by AP and dpa
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