New Delhi: US President Donald Trump on Monday met Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan, nearly two months after the latter’s first state visit to the country. Also Read - 'We Have Said Goodbye to Article 370,' Says PM Modi on Kashmir Issue at NRG Stadium in Houston
At the start of the meeting, the US President called himself ‘someone who can be a good arbitrator in Kashmir.’ Also Read - ‘You Have Suffered a Lot, We Will Build New Kashmir’, PM Tells Global Kashmiri Pandit Diaspora in Houston
Asked if he was willing to mediate, “I am ready, willing and able. It’s a complex issue. It’s been going on for a long time.”
However, he emphasized that he would mediate only if both sides wanted him to.
He even shared a light moment with the Pakistan Prime Minister, who, he said, ‘lives in a friendly neighbourhood’, after the latter told him that he looks forward to discussing with him, Afghanistan, India and Iran. He further called Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s dig at Pakistan at the ‘Howdy Modi’ event ‘aggressive’ but also said that it was ‘well received.’
Trump had first spoken about possibly mediating in the Kashmir issue during Imran’s visit to the US in July. Since then, time and again, he has spoken about Kashmir; India, however, has made it clear that any discussion on Kashmir will take place only between New Delhi and Islamabad.
On Tuesday, however, President Trump will once again meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi, just two days after the mega-successful ‘Howdy Modi’ event in Houston, Texas which was attended by over 50,000 members of the Indian-American diaspora as well as more than 60 members of the US Congress.
Tensions between India and Pakistan have escalated since the former revoked the special status of Jammu and Kashmir and ended its statehood, too. Pakistan has unsuccessfully tried to convince various international organisations to intervene in Kashmir.
On Friday, the two Prime Ministers will address the 74th session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) in New York.