‘Refrain from retaliatory aggression’, US lawmakers tell Pakistan

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Two powerful Democratic lawmakers have urged Pakistan to refrain from any retaliatory aggression against India and take demonstrable action against terrorists within its territory.

In response to the steps India has taken to revise the status of Jammu and Kashmir, Representative Eliot L. Engel, Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, and Senator Bob Menendez, Ranking Member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on Wednesday issued the statement.

“Chairman @RepEliotEngel& Senator @SenatorMenendez issued a statement in response to the steps India has taken to revise the status of Jammu and Kashmir,” House Foreign Affairs Committee said in a tweet.

“As the world’s largest democracy, India has an opportunity to demonstrate for all its citizens the importance of protecting and promoting equal rights, including freedom of assembly, access to information, and equal protections under the law,” the lawmakers said.

“Transparency and political participation are the cornerstones of representative democracies, and we hope the Indian government will abide by these principles in Jammu and Kashmir,” they said.

“At the same time Pakistan must refrain from any retaliatory aggression—including support for infiltrations across the Line of Control—and take demonstrable action against the terrorist infrastructure on Pakistan’s soil,” the statement reads.

On Wednesday, Pakistan expelled Indian High Commissioner Ajay Bisaria and downgraded diplomatic ties with India over its move to revoke the special status of Jammu and Kashmir.