Trump Remarks: How J&K’s 3 Former CMs Reacted

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SRINAGAR: While Government of India has refused the claims by US President that he was requested to media on Kashmir, the Kashmir political leaders are supported a third-party intervention. Unlike Congress, the National Conference and PDP have said a third party help is not bad.

Ghulam Nabi Azad, Dr Farooq Abdullah and Mehbooba Mufti

“Despite GOI refuting idea of third party mediation on J&K, the disclosure made by Trump marks a huge policy shift,” PDP leader Mehbooba Mufti tweeted. “Even though USA doesn’t hold a great record in resolving protracted conflicts, hope both countries seize this opportunity to forge peace through dialogue.”

Dr Farooq Abdullah who along with his party leaders in visiting Ajmeer also echoed the same response. “When Modi met Trump, he had told him this issue is a tangled one; If you could help in this, it will be good,” Dr Farooq told TV reporters. “I congratulated Modi Ji, because he also wants that everything should be used to solve this issue which is there for more than 70 years and is impacting the relations of India and Pakistan and Muslims and Hindus. Here in this Dargah we have prayed that they must succeed in creating a good relationship between India and Pakistan.”

However, Congress leader and former Chief Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad has said Trump statement is against India’s age-old stand.

“We are willing to believe our Prime Minister but he has to say that Trump is lying and what he said is a lie,” Azad told reporters. “All political parties and alliances that have come to power have retained the consistent foreign policy that Kashmir is a bilateral issue between India and Pakistan in the spirit of Shimla agreement and Lahore declaration.” He said there is no policy permission to involve a third party.

“Had he told this to a third country, we might have thought President Trump is in a lighter mood,” Azad said. “But the US president said this to Pakitan Prime Minister with whom we have this issue within the bilateral spirit.”

Azad said this diplomatic crisis is the outcome of Modi’s continuous avoidance of making a statement after a foreign trip, a tradition that all Prime Ministers upheld between Pandit Nehru and Dr Manmohan Singh. This, he said, is despite the fact that Prime Minister Modi visited more countries than his predecessors. “We respect the Prime Minister and he must clarify that President Trump is lying,” Azad said.

Trump had claimed during his meeting with Pakistan Premier Imran Khan that Prime Minister Narendra Modi had requested him to mediate in the Kashmir dispute. The Ministry of External Affairs, quickly rejected Trump’s remarks, saying it has been India’s consistent position that all outstanding issues with Pakistan are discussed only bilaterally.

Even though the foreign minister made a statement, the opposition is seeking a response from Prime Minister Modi.

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