US Rules out Meddling on Kashmir

Denying any mediatory role, Obama administration has said that India and Pakistan must address the Kashmir issue in a way that it helps ease tension between the two sides, which it believes is crucial to promote regional peace.

“The United States is not looking for mediation role, but rather we want India and Pakistan to be able to address these issues in a way that eases tensions, because we think it is really in benefit of both countries and also for promoting regional stability,” said Mike Hammer, spokesman National Security Council, which is the inter-agency coordination body of the White House.

James Jones, head of the council, who was recently in India, Pakistan and Afghanistan.

Referring to Jones visit, Hammar said that issues regarding tension between India and Pakistan sprang up for discussion during the week-long trip and the US reaffirmed its stand that the issue has to be resolved by the countries alone without the US having any mediatory role.

“We have had of course opportunities to discuss relationship between India and Pakistan. It is in our interest in seeing that the meetings that (Indian) Prime Minister had with (Pakistani) President (Asif Ali) Zardari in Russia continue in the sense that it is important for both country to engage in a dialogue and to try to ease tensions,” he said.

“We are encouraged by that and we hope that both countries would continue that effort,” said Hammer who accompanied General Jones to India, Pakistan and Afghanistan.

He said that India and the US have common interest in peace and stability in Pakistan and Afghanistan and that some specific issues relate bilaterally between India and Pakistan.

“On Kashmir, as I stated previously, we are not looking for mediation role,” he asserted and added that that is for India and Pakistan to address on their own.

“In relation to issues of terrorism, I can assure you that was discussed both in India and Pakistan. We feel that both countries, India and Pakistan are committed to combating terrorism and we just need to ensure that attacks like what happened in Mumbai do not reoccur,” Hammer said.

“I think those points were made loud and clear during our visit there – our concerns about the security situation in the region and in working together to avert any kind of terrorist act or activities,” Hammer said.

The spokesman said the United States would welcome any measures that each country can take to ease tensions and to improve the dialogue between the two countries.

“It is important for the security and stability of the region that India and Pakistan overcome some of the historical difficulties and tensions that we have seen in the past,” Hammer said.

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