The U.S. has welcomed the announcement by India and Pakistan that they’d observe the 2003 ceasefire alongside the Line of Control (LoC). The White House referred to as for the 2 nations to construct upon this progress and the State Department inspired a discount in tensions and violence alongside the LoC.
“…The United States welcomes the joint statement between India and Pakistan: that the two countries have agreed to maintain strict observance of a ceasefire along the Line of Control starting on February 25. This is a positive step towards greater peace and stability in South Asia, which is in all shared — is in our shared interest. And we encourage both countries to keep building upon this progress,” Press Secretary Jen Psaki mentioned at Thursday’s briefing.
“ …We welcome … the joint statement between India and Pakistan that the two countries have agreed to maintain strict observance of a ceasefire along the Line of Control starting on February 25. We encourage continued efforts to improve communication between the two sides and to reduce tensions and violence along the Line of Control,” State Department spokesperson Ned Price mentioned on Thursday.
In response to a query on the U.S. position, if any, in brokering the settlement between India and Pakistan, Mr. Price didn’t establish any particular actions however articulated the overall U.S. place — a discount in tensions and a condemnation of cross-border terror in addition to a dialogue on Kashmir and different points.
“I think what I can say and what you’ve heard me say from this podium and others from this administration say is that we had called on the parties to reduce tensions along the Line of Control by returning to that 2003 ceasefire agreement. We have been very clear that we condemn the terrorists who seek to infiltrate across the Line of Control,” he mentioned.
“When it comes to the U.S. role, we continue to support direct dialogue between India and Pakistan on Kashmir and other issues of concern. And as I said just a moment ago, we certainly welcome the arrangement that was announced that will take place — go into effect, I should say, on February 25.”
Former U.S. President Donald Trump had ruffled feathers in New Delhi with repeated affords to mediate between India and Pakistan on the Kashmir challenge. Mr. Trump had introduced in July 2019 that Prime Minister Narendra Modi had requested him to mediate on Kashmir with External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar “categorically” assuring Parliament that no such request was made.
Ties with Islamabad
On Thursday, Mr. Price was requested concerning the relationship the Biden administration would have with Pakistan — given the “warm relationship” Mr. Biden had with Pakistan when he was Vice-President (particularly within the Afghanistan context) — and the way he intends to remain impartial between India and Pakistan.
Pakistan had an essential position to play with regard to Afghanistan, Mr. Price mentioned, as he referred to as on the nation to play a “constructive role” with regard to Afghanistan, Kashmir and different areas of curiosity.
“Well, Pakistan is an important partner with whom we share many interests. We, as I said, have been clear in terms of this issue. Obviously, Pakistan has an important role to play when it comes to Afghanistan and what takes place across its other border. So clearly we will be paying close attention, and we urge the Pakistanis to play a constructive role in all of these areas of mutual interest, including in Afghanistan, including with Kashmir, including with our other shared interests,” he mentioned.
On whether or not Pakistan was doing sufficient by way of cross border terrorism, Ms. Psaki referred the query to the State Department and intelligence group for an evaluation however mentioned the U.S. will stay “closely engaged” with a “range of leaders and officials in the region, including those in Pakistan.”
UN chief ‘encouraged’
“The Secretary-General is encouraged by the joint statement issued by the militaries of India and Pakistan on their agreement to observing the ceasefire at the Line of Control in Kashmir and engaging through established mechanisms,” spokesperson for the U.N. Secretary General Antonio Guterres mentioned.
“He hopes that this positive step will provide an opportunity for further dialogue.”