In a phone conversation with Defence Minister Rajnath Singh today, US Defence Secretary Mark T Esper said today that the developments in Jammu and Kashmir are India's internal matter. Mr Esper added that he hopes issues between New Delhi and Islamabad will be resolved bilaterally.
Rajnath Singh raised the issue of cross-border terrorism with Mr Esper and lauded US support for India's effort to maintain peace and stability in the region, a defence ministry spokesperson said.
The spokesperson added that withdrawing Jammu and Kashmir's special status was India's internal matter and that the decisions relating to it were aimed at improving economic growth, enhancing democracy as well as prosperity of the people of the region.
"US Secretary of Defence appreciated India's position that the recent developments in Jammu & Kashmir are an internal matter of India. He hoped that any issue between India and Pakistan will be resolved bilaterally," the spokesperson said.
The conversation between Rajnath Singh and Mark Esper came a day after Prime Minister Narendra Modi spoke to US President Donald Trump over phone.
Earlier this month, India abrogated provisions of Article 370 in the Constitution to withdraw Jammu and Kashmir's special status and divided the state into two Union Territories, evoking strong reactions from Pakistan.
In their conversation, Rajnath Singh and Mark Esper expressed happiness at the "significant progress" made in bilateral defence cooperation and reaffirmed their commitment to strengthen and deepen US-India relations.