The USA appears to be on defensive following India’s rebuttal to President Donald Trump’s comments claiming PM Narendra Modi’s suggestion to him to mediate and stated that Kashmir is a bilateral issue between Delhi and Islamabad.
The US State Department on Tuesday sought to suggest that the Trump administration welcomed India and Pakistan to sit down and discuss Kashmir.
“While Kashmir is a bilateral issue for both parties to discuss, the Trump administration welcomes #Pakistan and #India sitting down and the United States stands ready to assist,” tweeted US Assistant Secretary of State for S & Central Asia Alice Wells.
A senior State Dept source speaking on background emphasised that Pakistan must take irreversible steps against terror infrastructure for sustained dialogue with India.
US Congressman Brad Sherman apologised to Indian envoy to USA for Trump’s comments. “I just apologized to Indian Ambassador @HarshShringla for Trump’s amateurish and embarrassing mistake. Everyone who knows anything about foreign policy in South Asia knows that #India consistently opposes third-party mediation re #Kashmir. Everyone knows PM Modi would never suggest such a thing. Trump’s statement is amateurish and delusional. And embarrassing,” tweeted Sherman.
Interestingly the US read out of meeting between Trump and Pak PM Imran Khan made no reference to J&K. “… President Donald J. Trump met with Prime Minister Imran Khan to discuss how the United States and Pakistan can work together to bring peace, stability, and economic prosperity to South Asia. The President and Prime Minister discussed the threat that terrorism presents to regional stability and discussed ways in which Pakistan can support a peaceful resolution to the conflict in Afghanistan. President Trump acknowledged initial steps that Pakistan has taken to facilitate Afghan peace efforts. He also affirmed Prime Minister Khan’s stated commitment to take action against militants and terrorists.”