This Article is From Aug 26, 2019

PM Modi "Really Feels He Has It Under Control": Trump On Kashmir

PM Modi at G7 Summit: The situation in Jammu and Kashmir and trade were high on the agenda during the bilateral summit of the two leaders.

PM Modi met Donald Trump on the sidelines of the G7 summit in France.


Prime Minister Narendra Modi, with US President Donald Trump by his side at their meeting in France today, stressed that India and Pakistan were one before 1947 and all issues between the two were bilateral, categorically rejecting any third party mediation.

"There are many bilateral issues between India and Pakistan, and we don't want to trouble any third country. We can discuss and resolve these issues bilaterally," PM Modi said, addressing the media jointly with President Trump before their talks on the sidelines of the G-7 summit in Biarritz.

President Trump, who had twice offered to mediate on Kashmir, said: "We spoke last night about Kashmir... and the Prime Minister really feels that he has the situation under control."

The US president said he spoke to PM Modi "at great length" last night.

"I have very good relationship with both the gentlemen (Modi and Khan) and I''m here. I think they can do it (resolve the issue) themselves," he said.

"We are talking about trade, we're talking about military and many different things. We had some great discussions, we were together last night for dinner and I learned a lot about India," added the US President.

After the meeting, President Trump tweeted:

The situation in Jammu and Kashmir and trade were high on the agenda during the bilateral summit of the two leaders; US officials said President Trump would raise the issue of restrictions and arrests of leaders.

The meeting took place against the backdrop of continued restrictions in parts of Jammu and Kashmir since the government's decision to end special status to Jammu and Kashmir under Article 370 and split the state into two union territories.

Earlier, President Trump had described the Kashmir situation as "explosive" and offering to mediate between India and Pakistan if asked. Washington has traditionally maintained that Jammu and Kashmir is a bilateral matter between India and Pakistan.

But since July, President Trump has offered his assistance more than once.

In July, after a meeting with Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan, President Trump controversially claimed that PM Modi had asked him to mediate on Kashmir. India rejected that claim and the "mediation" offer, emphasising that there can't be any third
party intervention on Kashmir.

Earlier this month, President Trump referred to the matter again, saying he would "certainly intervene if they (India and Pakistan) want me to", triggering another reiteration of  Kashmir's bilateral status from New Delhi. Foreign Minister S Jaishankar tweeted that he had conveyed India's stand to his US counterpart Mike Pompeo during their meeting in Bangkok on the sidelines of the East Asia Summit Foreign Ministers' meeting.

Later, asked about India declining the US offer, President Trump had told reporters, "It is really up to Prime Minister (Narendra) Modi".