ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846
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When Is Secession Justified? The Context of Kashmir

Given the turmoil in Kashmir today, a number of right-thinking people have come to defend the right of the people of Kashmir to a state of their own; or more simply that the Kashmiri people possess the right of secession via the right of self-determination. But if self-determination has proved to be the veritable will-o'-the-wisp in recent history - since it begs the question of which entity possesses this right, and by virtue of what do the people of a region possess this right - secession is one of the most difficult of concepts that political theorists have had to take on board after the "ethnic explosion" that shook the world at the turn of the 1990s. Do people have the right to establish their own state quite in the same manner as they have the right to elect their own government? How do we justify secession? What are the moral considerations that we need to weigh the right of secession against? This essay seeks to negotiate these very questions in the context of Kashmir.

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