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Trump offers mediation between Pakistan, India on Kashmir dispute

WASHINGTON: President Donald Trump on Monday offered to mediate the decades-long Kashmir dispute between India and Pakistan, a move that would signal a shift in longstanding US policy that the issue must be solved bilaterally.

“If I can help, I would love to be a mediator,” Trump said at the White House, where he was hosting Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan. “If I can do anything to help, let me know.”

“We welcome PM Imran Khan in the United States.’ he added.

While talking to reporters at White House, the US President praised PM Imran Khan and Pakistani nation, saying that Pakistani people are so strong and the United States desires good relations with them.

“I and Imran Khan, both are new leaders and Kashmir dispute can be resolved. We both can play a bigger role to resolve Kashmir dispute. The resolution of Kashmir and Afghanistan issues will bring prosperity in the region. ”

Trump said that he would definitely accept invitation to visit Pakistan.

He said that the US government is well-aware of tensions between Islamabad and New Delhi. Trump confirmed that the tensed ties between the neighbouring countries will also come into discussion during the meeting with PM Khan.

“My meeting with PM Imran Khan was very productive. Imran Khan is the most popular prime minister of Pakistan.”

Afghanistan reconciliation process

“The United States is working with Pakistan for troops withdrawal from Afghanistan. We don’t wish to play the policeman role in Afghanistan. I can resolve Afghan issue within 10 days but we are not in favour for the bloodshed of 1 million people. For the troops’ withdrawal from Afghanistan, Pakistan’s support is very necessary.”

AFP Photo

“Pakistan has never lied to the US. We are holding dialogues with Taliban and we will move to the solution with the assistance of Pakistan.”

While interacting with journalists at Trump’s Oval Office, PM Imran Khan said that the United States is country which possesses significant importance to Pakistan.

“I was invited to visit the United States by President Donald Trump,” he said.

The premier added that both countries became partner in war against terrorism after 9/11 incident and it fought a joint fight against the menace.

“We are very close to finding a historical solution of Afghanistan issue. It is now clear to everyone that the Afghan issue has no military solution except talks. Islamabad will urge Taliban to hold dialogues with the Afghan government.”

‘Negotiating with Iran’

While answering to a question, US President Donald Trump said it was becoming more difficult for him to think about negotiating with Iran, following a series of incidents that have sent tensions with the Islamic republic soaring.

“It’s getting harder for me to want to make a deal with Iran,” Trump told reporters at the White House, hours after Tehran announced it arrested 17 people it said were part of a CIA spy ring.

Trump dismissed that claim as “totally false,” and said late last week that a US Navy ship had destroyed an Iranian drone, an assertion rejected by Iran.

PM Imran’s arrival at White House

Earlier, Prime Minister Imran Khan held a meeting with the United States President Donald Trump at White House where they discussed cementing Pakistan-US bilateral ties here on Monday.

PM Imran Khan was welcomed by the US President Trump upon his arrival at White House.

Imran Khan Donald Trump White House

The premier is accompanied by Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi, Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa, Director General (DG) Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) Major General Asif Ghafoor and DG Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) Lieutenant General Faiz Hameed.

Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi in his latest Twitter message said, “The Prime Minister of Pakistan is here to showcase his vision of a “Naya Pakistan” and to start a new era of bilateral relations. We have come with a narrative of peace and prosperity in the region.”

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