Hours after saying that the India did not inform the Trump administration about its move on Kashmir, a US official has now said that the country is closely monitoring the developments in the state, particularly the move to bifurcate J&K into two Union Territories.
The US has also urged Pakistan to exercise restraint even as Imran Khan’s government continues to issue threats and has now snapped trade and downgraded diplomatic ties with India. Pakistan on Wednesday expelled Indian High Commissioner Ajay Bisaria and also downgraded diplomatic ties over the Modi government’s decision to revoke Jammu and Kashmir’s special status.
“The US is closely following India’s legislation regarding the new territorial status and governance of Jammu and Kashmir. We note the broader implications of these developments, including the potential for increased instability in the region,” a State Department spokesperson told PTI.
On Wednesday, the US had said there was an “urgent need” for dialogue among all actors to reduce tensions and to avoid a potential military escalation in South Asia.
Senator Robert Menendez and Congressman Eliot Engel in a joint statement on Wednesday also expressed concern over the restrictions in Jammu and Kashmir.
"Pakistan must refrain from any retaliatory aggression, including support for infiltrations across the Line of Control, and take demonstrable action against the terrorist infrastructure on Pakistan’s soil, they said in the statement.
The State Department spokesperson said that “the US calls for calm and restraint by all parties”.
In a momentous move on Monday, Home Minister Amit Shah moved a resolution in Rajya Sabha to scrap Article 370 of the Constitution to revoke Jammu and Kashmir’s special status. In another bill, the government also bifurcated Jammu and Kashmir into two Union Territories - Jammu and Kashmir, and Ladakh.
The Centre had rushed an additional 38,000 personnel to Jammu and Kashmir before the move on Monday and another batch of 8,000 troops after the decision.
The Valley is currently under a lockdown with Section 144 imposed across the state. Several prominent political leaders, including former chief ministers Mehbooba Mufti and Omar Abdullah are under detention while Farooq Abdullah is under house arrest.
Meanwhile, as India maintains that scrapping Article 370 is an internal matter, Pakistan continues with its attempts to internationalise it by threatening to approach the United Nations.
Imran Khan on Wednesday called his British counterpart Boris Johnson and Saudi crown prince Mohammed bin Salman as part of his government’s plan to inform the world leaders about India’s decision of revoking Article 370 and withdrawing the special status of Jammu and Kashmir.
The international community, including the US and UN, have urged for restraint, peace and stability in the region.