• Wednesday, Oct 16, 2019
  • Last Update : 03:19 am

Trump to meet Imran, Modi for talks centering Kashmir

  • Published at 11:59 am September 18th, 2019
web-with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi. US President Donald Trump  Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan
with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, US President Donald Trump and Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan Collected

He says a lot of progress was being made on the matter

US President Donald Trump has said he will soon hold talks with both Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan.

He also claimed that the tensions between the two countries have lessened to some degree, reports Dawn.

Trump made the statement on Monday, while responding to a question about a joint rally with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

The US president is scheduled to address a rally along with Modi in Houston, Texas, on September 22.

He said: “I’ll see Prime Minister Modi and I will — we’ll — be meeting with (prime ministers of) India and Pakistan.” 

“And I think a lot of progress is being made there, a lot of progress,” he told reporters on Monday.

President Trump's remarks demonstrate that the US leader was still interested in acting as a mediatory role between South Asia’s two nuclear-armed neighbours to resolve the Kashmir dispute, Dawn stated.

Trump's announcement comes directly after media speculations about a meeting with Prime Minister Imran Khan during the UN General Assembly (UNGA) in New York next week.

Both the Pakistani and Indian prime ministers are scheduled to be in attendance at the UN General Assembly in New York on September 27.

Although Trump is already scheduled to meet Modi in Houston, his UNGA schedule points toward a meeting with Imran on the sidelines of the General Assembly, reports Dawn.

Kashmir -- which has been divided between India and Pakistan since their independence in 1947 -- has been the spark for two major wars and countless clashes between the nuclear-armed arch-rivals, most recently in February when they conducted tit-for-tat air strikes.

Tensions between India and Pakistan reached a feverish pitch on August 5, when New Delhi scrapped Article 370 in the Indian constitution that had granted Kashmir special autonomy- its own constitution and decision-making rights for all matters except for defense, communications and foreign affairs.

The US president first offered to mediate between the two countries on August 20, in what he called an "explosive" situation in Kashmir.

Since then, he has repeated this offer but was denied by Prime Minister Modi, who stated that the situation was “under control."