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Entries in Kashmir (2)

Monday
Nov212011

Oops: State Dept. Botches Map of Disputed Kashmir Region

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- Unlike Rick Perry’s “oops,” this one could have geopolitical consequences.

The U.S. State Department posted a faulty map on its website that alters some of the geographical boundaries of Kashmir, the disputed region between India and Pakistan, and depicted some area as part of Pakistan. The region has been a major source of tension between the two South Asian rivals since their partition in 1948.

The offending image has already been taken down, but it can still be seen in reports in the region.

“It did contain some inaccuracies which were associated with the boundaries of some geographic features,” State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland told reporters Monday. “This was unintentional. We’re going to get the map fixed and put up a fixed map.”

She said U.S. officials have already spoken to Indian officials to explain the mix-up, but didn’t know if they had yet spoken with Pakistani officials.

Before you think it’s just a harmless map, remember that an erroneous Google map nearly caused a war between Costa Rica and Nicaragua last November when a Nicaraguan general used it to justify the occupation of an island claimed by Costa Rica.

And a 2008 typo by the U.S. Board of Geographic Names, the official body under the U.S. Interior Department that lists the names and affiliations of locations around the world, mistakenly listed a string of islands claimed by both Japan and South Korea as “undesignated sovereignty” instead of belonging to South Korea, which is longstanding U.S. policy. The mistake led to a diplomatic spat.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Jan192011

Special United Nations Rapporteur Visits Indian Kashmir

Photo Courtesy - ABC News Radio(SRINAGAR, India) -- In a special visit to Indian Kashmir, Margaret Sekaggya, a special human rights advisor to the United Nations, made her first steps on Wednesday toward bringing answers on the troubled land to the U.N.

Sekaggya is a lawyer and academic from Uganda who has specifically been assigned to be a special rapporteur to review the working conditions of human rights defenders in the region.

Her visit comes on the heels of several violent incidents last year in which 112 people were shot dead by security forces during protests. Last week, New Delhi announced its intentions to reduce security forces by 25 percent in Kashmir to hopefully make life easier. Kashmir is one of the world's most militarized zones because of border disputes.

On Wednesday, Sekaggya met with several victims of human rights violations as well as local journalists. This was not an unfamiliar situation for her -- she was the chairperson of the Uganda Human Rights Commission from 1996-2008.

She is expected to conclude her visit on Thursday by meeting with local officials.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio







ABC News Radio