Americas, Asia - Pacific

Trump urges Pakistani, Indian leaders to exercise calm

US president calls on India and Pakistan to work towards reducing tensions in Kashmir

Michael Hernandez   | 20.08.2019
Trump urges Pakistani, Indian leaders to exercise calm


U.S. President Donald Trump urged the leaders of Pakistan and India to diffuse tensions during separate telephone calls Monday amid tensions over India-administered Jammu and Kashmir. 

Trump said his discussions with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Pakistani Premier Imran Khan focused on a series of topics, including the "tough situation" in Kashmir, describing the conversations as "good".

"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," Trump wrote on Twitter.

The White House earlier released separate readouts of the calls with similar language.

Tensions between Pakistan and India have flared following New Delhi's scrapping of the special status of the Muslim-majority Jammu and Kashmir region.

The India-administered region has been facing a clampdown since Aug. 5, when the Indian government nixed Article 370 of the Indian constitution which conferred a special status on it. Hundreds of people, mostly political leaders, have been detained or arrested by authorities since the Indian Parliament made the move.

Kashmiri leaders and residents fear the move is an attempt by India to change the demography of the state, where some groups have been fighting Indian rule for either independence or unification with neighboring Pakistan.

India and Pakistan both hold Kashmir in parts and claim it in full. China also claims part of the contested region, but it is India and Pakistan who have fought two wars over Kashmir.

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