“No Such Request By PM”: Centre To Parliament On Trump’s Kashmir Mediation

Parliament

New Delhi, July 23 : In wake of the massive controversy over US President Donald Trump’s claim that Prime Minister Narendra Modi had sought his “mediation” in the Kashmir issue, Minister of External Affairs (MEA) S Jaishankar said that “no such request has been made by the Prime Minister to the US President”.

Amid chaos in parliament,the Foreign Minister said in the Rajya Sabha, “I would like to categorically assure the house that no such request has been made by the Prime Minister to the US President. I would also like to reiterate that it has been India’s consistent position that all outstanding issues with Pakistan are discussed only bilaterally.”

“I would like to categorically assure the House that no such request has been made by PM Modi. It has been India’s consistent position that all outstanding issues with Pakistan are discussed only bilaterally. Any engagement with Pakistan would require an end to cross-border terrorism,” Jaishankar said in Rajya Sabha on Tuesday.

Jaishankar also drew reference from the Shimla Agreement and the Lahore declaration, stating that the two agreements “provide the basis to resolve all issues between India and Pakistan bilaterally”.

Opposition parties, especially the Congress, have demanded that PM Modi clarify on Trump’s comment.

Two notices were submitted for an urgent discussion; Congress MP K Suresh called for a discussion in the Lok Sabha and Left lawmaker D Raja in the Rajya Sabha.

India has strongly rejected Trump’s claim and even the US State Department, in a clarification, said while Kashmir is a bilateral issue, “the Trump administration welcomes Pakistan and India sitting down and the United States stands ready to assist”.

On Monday, with Imran Khan by his side, President Trump said: “I was with Prime Minister Modi two weeks ago, and we talked about the subject. And he actually said, ‘would you like to be a mediator, or arbitrator’, and I said ‘where?’, and he said ‘Kashmir’, because this has been going on for many, many years. I was surprised for how long it has been going on,” to which Imran Khan interjected to say, “70 years”.

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