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Ceasefire violations: Indian envoy summoned over Pakistani civilian deaths


By NewsGram Staff Writer

Islamabad: In yet another case of ceasefire violations, Pakistan summoned a senior Indian diplomat to the foreign ministry on Friday and lodged a protest over a “recent cross-border shelling that killed at least three civilians”.

The army said the civilians were killed due to “Indian unprovoked firing” in Nakial sector along the Line of Control (LoC) in the disputed Kashmir region on Thursday.


“The Indian Deputy High Commissioner, JP Singh was summoned to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs today to protest against the shahadat (martyrdom) of three civilians, in Nikial sector, due to the unprovoked ceasefire violations by the Indian Security Forces at the Line of Control,” the foreign ministry said in a statement.

“The Government of Pakistan has expressed its deep concern at the continuous unprovoked ceasefire violations by the Indian Security Forces and the intentional targeting of innocent civilians, which is highly condemnable,” the statement said.

The foreign ministry said Pakistan has stressed upon India to stop forthwith these ceasefire violations and respect the 2003 ceasefire arrangement in order to restore peace and tranquility at the LoC and the Working Boundary.

Pakistan and India declared ceasefire along the LoC in 2003, however, border troops occasionally traded fire. Both countries accused each other of the ceasefire violations.

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India-Pakistan peace process: US President Donald Trump may get involved, says US Representative to UN Nikki Haley

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United Nations, April 4, 2017: The US is concerned about the state of India-Pakistan relations and President Donald Trump himself may get involved in a peace process between the two South Asian antagonists, Nikki Haley, the US Permanent Representative to the UN said on Monday.

“This administration is concerned about the relationship between India and Pakistan and very much wants to see how we de-escalate any sort of conflict going forward,” Haley, who holds a cabinet rank in the Trump administration, said.

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“I would expect that the administration going to be in talks and try and find its place to be part of that (process).”

She added, “And also wouldn’t be surprised if the President participates as well.”

India has opposed external involvement in bilateral issues with Pakistan.

During his campaign in 2016, Trump had offered to mediate between India and Pakistan, but was careful to add that it was only if the two nations wanted him to.

In an interview to The Hindustan Times he said that he “would be honoured” to be a moderator. “I think if they wanted me to, I would love to be the mediator or arbitrator.”

Haley was answering a question from a reporter at her news conference on assuming the presidency of the Security Council for the month of April.

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The reporter pointed out that India does not want an interlocutor for talks with Pakistan, while Islamabad wanted the US or another country to facilitate talks between them and asked if the US would get the leaders of the two countries to talk.

With Secretary of State Rex Tillerson keeping a low public profile and generally avoiding the media, Haley is emerging as the public face of US diplomacy making her presence felt in the media aided by her cabinet status.

Her statement about India-Pakistan relations, therefore, assume importance and it is the first high-level Trump administration statement on India’s relations with Pakistan.

While it is not clear what steps the US could take, Prime Minister Narendra Modi is expected to meet Trump in Washington in May when the two could discuss it.

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Former President Barack Obama also had said during his 2008 campaign that the US should mediate the Kashmir dispute. The offer met with strong opposition in India and he did not actively follow it up when he became President.

“We don’t think we should wait until something happens” Haley said. “We very much think we should be pro-active in what we are seeing, tensions rise and conflicts seem to bubble up and so want to see if we can be a part of that.”

“So, that will be something you will see, that is something that members of the National Security Council participate in,” she said. (IANS)