U.S. President Donald Trump says that this weekend he will talk to Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi about mediating in the Kashmir conflict Photo: AFP
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Trump offers to mediate 'explosive' Kashmir standoff

16 Comments
By Sebastian Smith

U.S. President Donald Trump offered Tuesday to mediate the "explosive" situation in Kashmir amid mounting international concern over a flare-up in violence between India and Pakistan in the divided region.

Speaking a day after phone calls with the premiers of both countries, Trump said he was happy to try and help calm the situation in Kashmir where tensions have spiked since India revoked autonomous rule in the part of the region it controls on August 5.

His comments came as Pakistan said three of its civilians died in Indian gunfire from across the de facto border in Kashmir known as the Line of Control.

And the Press Trust of India news agency quoted officials as saying one Indian soldier died and four were wounded when Pakistani troops opened fire on forward posts and villages along the LoC in the Poonch district on Tuesday.

Both India and Pakistan are nuclear powers and the situation in Kashmir is further complicated by the fact that China also claims part of the Himalayan region.

Trump -- who has previously spoken of his willingness to mediate -- said he would raise the situation over the weekend with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Both men are expected in France for a summit of the Group of Seven industralized nations.

"Kashmir is a very complicated place. You have Hindus and you have the Muslims and I wouldn’t say they get along so great," Trump told reporters at the White House.

"I will do the best I can to mediate," he added.

At least 4,000 people have been detained in Indian-controlled Kashmir since early August when authorities imposed a communications blackout and restricted freedom of movement in the region.

A senior U.S. official, who has just returned from a visit to the region, called on India Tuesday to quickly release detainees and restore basic liberties.

"We continue to be very concerned by reports of detentions, and continued restrictions on the residents of the region," the State Department official told reporters.

"We urge respect for individual rights, compliance with legal procedures and an inclusive dialogue," said the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity.

Both India and Pakistan have controlled portions of the former princely state of Kashmir since independence in 1947. The dispute over the Muslim-majority region has been the spark for two major wars and countless clashes between them.

Earlier this year they again came close to all-out conflict, after a militant attack in Indian-held Kashmir in February was claimed by a group based in Pakistan, touching off tit-for-tat air strikes.

India has bristled at any suggestion of foreign mediation and strenuously denied a claim by Trump last month that Modi had invited him to act a peace broker.

It was also left seething when the U.N. Security Council held its first formal meeting on Kashmir in nearly half a century last week, saying it would not accept "international busybodies ... tell(ing) us how to run our lives."

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson told Modi in a phone call on Tuesday that the Kashmir dispute must be resolved between India and Pakistan alone.

Johnson "made clear that the UK views the issue of Kashmir as one for India and Pakistan to resolve bilaterally. He underlined the importance of resolving issues through dialogue," a spokeswoman for his Downing Street office said.

But in a further sign of the international concern about the situation, officials in France said that President Emmanuel Macron would bring up Kashmir with Modi when the two meet in Paris ahead of the G7 summit.

In justifying the scrapping of Kashmir's autonomy, Modi said last week that "fresh thinking" was needed after decades of bloodshed in Kashmir. But his decision provoked a widespread backlash and there have been several rallies in the regional capital Srinagar attracting thousands of demonstrators.

© 2019 AFP

©2019 GPlusMedia Inc.


16 Comments
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Let Kashmiri people decide if they want to be a part of India or Pakistan or become an independent country.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

"Kashmir is a very complicated place. You have Hindus and you have the Muslims and I wouldn’t say they get along so great," Trump told reporters

And you have the Indus River. But Trump's comprehension of the ongoing issues there (and elsewhere around the globe) seems to be what a 10 year old would have when first introduced to the topic. Or maybe he's addressing those in his base with a Trump-level level of understanding.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Tump’s haters keep trying to say that he isn’t respected internationally. If so, then why was he asked to mediate this, one of the globe’s most intractable conflicts?

-5 ( +0 / -5 )

It’s pretty baffling alright. I guess those countries aren’t the norm. Trust us, outside the American right wing bubble, pretty much the entire planet thinks he’s a moron. Every country I go to it’s the constant refrain. The low hanging fruit.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

The Office of the President of the United States might make a suitable mediator.

The incumbent of that office does not.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Does anyone of you know that 500,000 Kashmiri Hindus have been driven from their homeland and become refugees in their own country thanks to Islamic extremists in the valley?

Jawaharlal Nehru, for his own egotistical reasons, against the overwhelming majority of his own political party, extended a special status to Kashmir while Pakistan had absolutely no such qualms about "maintaining the demography" in its part of Kashmir. That's the reason why Kashmir became a haven for Islamic extremists from Pakistan. What Modi has done is to simply undo one of the biggest blunders of Nehru.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Tump’s haters keep trying to say that he isn’t respected internationally. If so, then why was he asked to mediate this, one of the globe’s most intractable conflicts?

Poor Rating for Trump globally (2018)

https://www.pewresearch.org/global/2018/10/01/trumps-international-ratings-remain-low-especially-among-key-allies/

https://www.pewresearch.org/global/wp-content/uploads/sites/2/2018/09/PG_2018.10.1_U.S.-Image_0-4.png

https://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2018/10/global-opinion-of-trump/571870/

Comparing different presidencies

https://www.pewresearch.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/07/PG_2017.06.26.US_Image-00-0.png

Wanna hear what one foreign leader said about Trump?

“He changes his views even in a manner of hours,” Mahathir said of Trump on Wednesday during an event at the Council on Foreign Relations in New York. “Dealing with people who are not consistent is a big problem.”

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-09-26/malaysian-leader-says-trump-s-style-doesn-t-work-well-in-asia

Trump's idea of buying Greenland ridiculed by Danish MPs

https://japantoday.com/category/world/update-1-not-for-sale-danish-mps-ridicule-idea-of-trump-buying-greenland

He was asked just because he is the POTUS, not because he is a respectable & great leader

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Tump’s haters keep trying to say that he isn’t respected internationally.

No one is trying to say any such thing. People are simply stating the blooming' obvious.

why was he asked to mediate this, one of the globe’s most intractable conflicts?

He wasn't.

He stuck his big orange nose in and offered Tuesday to mediate

He has previously spoken of his willingness to mediate

Meanwhile India has bristled at any suggestion of foreign mediation and strenuously denied a claim by Trump last month that Modi had invited him to act a peace broker.

It's all in the article. I know, Trumpettes aren't big on reading.

He was asked just because he is the POTUS

He was not asked at all.

Invalid CSRF

3 ( +3 / -0 )

So much for Trump the statesman. He has cancelled a trip to Denmark because the Danish PM will not talk about selling Greenland.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

@cla, no need to be a Trump-hater (am not) to understand that geopolitics -especially when/if the us aren't involved- aren't DT's forte.

Kashmir is a very complicated place. You have Hindus and you have the Muslims and I wouldn’t say they get along so great," Trump told reporters at the White House.

Says it all. I'd listen to what Trump's got to say about $, us real estate stuff, his dealings with Don King and Mike Tyson in the late 80s etc. Kashmir, geopolitics, history etc not so much.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

@changamangaliay

Let Kashmiri people decide if they want to be a part of India or Pakistan or become an independent country.

The religious composition of Kashmir is 68% Muslim, 28% Hindu, and others including Buddhists and Christians.

“Let Kashmiri people decide” would probably result in the formation of either a new province of Pakistan or an independent state that would not respect the rights of Hindus, Buddhists or Christians.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

@cla Tump’s haters keep trying to say that he isn’t respected internationally. If so, then why was he asked to mediate this, one of the globe’s most intractable conflicts?...

Congratulations you have the reading comprehension of 1st grader and then that is being generous...maybe insulting some 1st graders....

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Oh good grief, are they still arguing about this place?

"Kashmir is a very complicated place. You have Hindus and you have the Muslims and I wouldn’t say they get along so great"

Heck, the Muslims can't even get along with each other.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

Trump: Well, its my pleasure to help mediate between the Iranians.....what? I mean Indians, and the Polish.....what? I mean Pakistanis...

First, I'd like to introduce the Prime Minister of India, Geronimo....er, I mean PM Modi.....

So, first things first, we all agree I'm a stable genius...right?

Now let's get to business - whoever offers me free real estate for a Trump Massage Parlor and Casino wins...

You guys discuss it and let me now when you decide - I have to go watch Fox and Friends...

1 ( +2 / -1 )

That's some wild imagination you've got there, lincolnman. ( 6:09pm )

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

That's some wild imagination you've got there, lincolnman. ( 6:09pm )

Trump: And today I'm in Kashmir - which is home of the cashmere sweater....which reminds me, while I'm here I'll have to pick up some sweaters for Ivana, Marla, Meiania, and Stormy....

2 ( +2 / -0 )

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