Any discussion on Kashmir will only be with Pakistan, S Jaishankar on Trump’s mediation offer

As US President Donald Trump reiterated his offer to mediate the Kashmir issue, saying that he would assist if India and Pakistan wanted his help to resolve the decades-old dispute. External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar on Friday said that any discussion on Kashmir will only be with Pakistan and only bilaterally.

“Have conveyed to American counterpart @SecPompeo this morning in clear terms that any discussion on Kashmir, if at all warranted, will only be with Pakistan and only bilaterally,” Jaishankar tweeted.

On Thursday, Trump said it was up to India and Pakistan to resolve the Kashmir issue, but he was ready to assist.

Donald Trump was referring to his last week’s meeting with Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan, wherein he offered to help to resolve the Kashmir issue. Pakistan has welcomed his statement. However, his offer was strongly rejected by India.

“It’s really up to PM Modi (to accept the offer of mediation),” Trump told reporters responding to a question on India not accepting his offer of mediation on Kashmir.

“I think they are fantastic people – Imran Khan and Narendra Modi — I mean. I would imagine they could get along very well, but if they wanted somebody to intervene, to help them and I spoke with Pakistan about that and I spoke frankly in (sic) India about it,” Trump said.

Last week, President Trump had claimed that PM Modi had asked him to play the role of a mediator on Kashmir.

Trump said, “he had received a request to do so from PM Modi during a recent meeting with him.”

“If I can help, I would love to be a mediator. If I can do anything to help, let me know,” Trump had said.

India quickly denied the claim and made it clear that the Kashmir issue was never discussed between PM Modi and Donald Trump.