Call from White House

Despite India’s consistent stand that bifurcation and revocation of India-held Jammu and Kashmir’s special status is its internal matter, the world has started realising the importance of the issue. On Monday, the Indian prime minister had an unwelcome call from United States President Donald Trump, who also spoke with Prime Minister Imran Khan, urging both sides to reduce tensions over the Kashmir issue. With time, Trump and other world leaders will realise that confrontation can only be scaled down if the Kashmir issue is resolved as per the wishes of the Kashmiris. President Trump showed his intention to step in and mediate in the dispute during a press talk after meeting Prime Minister Imran Khan in Washington. About the recent phone call, Mr Trump himself announced through a tweet: “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!” Later, White House spokesperson Hoga Gidley explained: “The US president conveyed the importance of reducing tensions between India and Pakistan and maintaining peace in the region.”

It was left to Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi to share details of Imran-Trump call. He says Trump called Modi after his meeting with Prime Minister Imran in the White House on Aug 16. He said America is serious in deescalating tensions between Pakistan and India. The prime minister used the occasion to enlighten Mr Trump about the curfew imposed in India-held Kashmir for the last 15 days, locking down four million Muslims. Also, thousands have been arrested and flown out of occupied Kashmiri. Such a situation merits visits of observers from human rights organisations as India has been violating international law and its commitments to the international community. If the world does not interfere in the Kashmir situation, a humanitarian crisis is imminent.

The interference of Trump in Indo-Pak tension is a significant step. Earlier, the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation also expressed concern over the lockdown in blatant violation of human rights. The United Nations Security Council also took up the issue, though informally, after a gap of decades, and urged both India and Pakistan to settle the issue bilaterally. Both countries lack trust and the interference of the world community is necessary to resolve the issue. *

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