US President asks Pak PM to 'moderate rhetoric' with India over Kashmir

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WASHINGTON: US President Donald Trump has asked Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan to "moderate rhetoric" with India over Kashmir.

 

On Monday, Trump had spoken separately to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Pakistani counterpart Khan in his bid to ease fresh Indo-Pak tensions after India revoked the special status of Jammu and Kashmir.

After his 30-minute conversation with Modi, Trump held a telephonic conversation with Khan.

“Trump spoke with Khan to discuss the need to reduce tensions and moderate rhetoric with India over the situation in Jammu and Kashmir," the White House said in a readout of the call.

“During the conversation with Khan, Trump reaffirmed the need to avoid escalation of the situation and urged restraint on both sides. The two leaders also agreed to work towards strengthening US-Pakistan economic and trade cooperation”, the White House said.

"Spoke to my two good friends, Prime Minister Modi of India, and Prime Minister Khan of Pakistan, regarding trade, strategic partnerships and, most importantly, for India and Pakistan to work towards reducing tensions in Kashmir. A tough situation, but good conversations," Trump said in a tweet.

“In his telephonic conversation with Trump, Modi highlighted the importance of creating an environment free from terror and violence and eschewing cross-border terrorism without exception”, a Prime Minister's Office (PMO) release said in New Delhi.

The conversation between Modi and Trump took place two days after the US president asked Khan to resolve the Kashmir issue with India bilaterally.

Tensions between India and Pakistan spiked after India abrogated provisions of Article 370 of the Constitution to withdraw Jammu and Kashmir's special status and bifurcated it into two Union Territories, evoking strong reactions from Pakistan.

On August 5, the government had revoked some provisions of Article 370 to take away Jammu and Kashmir's special status and brought in a bill for splitting the state into two Union territories, Jammu and Kashmir, and Ladakh.

Union Home Minister Amit Shah later withdrew the Jammu and Kashmir Reservation (2nd Amendment) Bill, 2019, in Lok Sabha, saying that the clauses incorporated in the legislation will automatically come into effect in the two new Union Territories.

On August 6, the Parliament had approved a resolution abrogating special status to Jammu and Kashmir under Article 370 of the Constitution and a bill for splitting the state into two Union Territories.

 

With inputs from PTI

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