US seeks stability in S. Asia, views Pakistan-India dialogue as internal matter

ISLAMABAD: In a press briefing on Monday, a spokesperson of the US State Department emphasized the United States’ stance on regional stability in South Asia and reiterated that the dialogue between Pakistan and India is a matter for the two countries to resolve.

Ned Price’s statement comes in response to recent calls from Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif for serious and sincere talks with his Indian counterpart, Narendra Modi, to address issues such as the conflict in occupied Kashmir.

“My message to the Indian leadership and Prime Minister Narendra Modi is let’s sit down at the table and have serious and sincere talks to resolve our burning issues, like Kashmir,” Sharif said in an interview with Al Arabiya news channel, telecast by state-run Pakistan Television last week.

However, the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) later clarified that talks with India can only take place after India reverses its actions in the Muslim-majority state of Indian-occupied Kashmir.

In the interview, Sharif also said he had taken up the issue with UAE President Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed on his recent visit to the oil-rich sheikhdom.

“He’s a brother of Pakistan. He also has good relations with India. He can play a very important role to bring the two countries on the talking table,” Sharif had said.

Price also emphasised the US’ desire for constructive relations with Pakistan and any elected government in Pakistan, but noted Washington evaluates governments based on the policies they pursue.

— With Reuters

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