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Home / World / Trump Offers to Mediate Kashmir Conflict, as Pakistan's Imran Khan Visits

Trump Offers to Mediate Kashmir Conflict, as Pakistan's Imran Khan Visits



WASHINGTON-President Trump offered to mediate the long-running Kashmir conflict between Pakistan and India, Prime Minister Imran Khan in Washington.

Mr. Trump's help mediating the conflict, the president said India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi had said he would gladly play a role.

"If I can help, I would like to be a mediator," Mr. Trump said Monday.

Both India and Pakistan have claimed the Kashmir region since their creation in 1947. Each country seized part of Kashmir, administering their portion ever since.

The US Trump is leaning on Prime Minister Imran Khan to help facilitate peace talks with the Taliban in Afghanistan. Photos: Michael Brochstein / Zuma Press and Farooq Naeem / AFP / Getty Images
    

Mr. Khan was expressed in this year's recent clashes between Pakistan and India. Pakistani and Indian jet fighters clashed in the skies above their disputed border, with each side claiming to have a shot down and Pakistan capturing an Indian pilot.

and other world powers urged restraint at the time, and Pakistan's ambassador to the U.S., Asad Khan, called on the U.S. to step up his diplomatic efforts to avert a war

Mr. Trump's comments came on Monday as he welcomed Mr. Khan to the White House. The Afghan Taliban agrees with the Afghan Government.

The meeting comes as Pakistan has been cooperating with the United States. to press the Taliban to strike a peace deal; to withdraw its troops from Afghanistan.

U.S. Pat. Approaching the meeting with cautious optimism, a senior administration said on Friday. The official said the U.S. what's appreciative of Pakistan's initial steps, but added: "We're reaching a critical juncture."

"Khan is saying the right things," the official said. Taliban and Haqqani leaders who do not support peace. "The Haqqani network is a major Taliban -aligned insurgent group in Afghanistan.

Mr. Khan's visit, the official said, is an opportunity to incentivize the Taliban to advance the peace process in Afghanistan.

The meeting follows Mr. Trump's decision last year to hold the first sustained US talks with the Taliban, at approach Pakistani officials have advocated for years. Mr. Trump is seeking to conclude a deal with the Taliban by September-an agreement that could allow the U.S. to exit Afghanistan, where it is thousands of troops, Mr. Trump seeks re-election.

Mr. Trump was a bilateral meeting with Mr. Khan at the Oval Office, followed by an expanded working lunch.

The two leaders were set to discuss potential cooperation on trade, energy and women's issues, the official said, describing the encounter as a rapport-building meeting.

Mr , Khan was sworn in in August after an unexpectedly strong showing in the country's July 25 election. He has been in Pakistan for over 200 million people since he was a civil servant in his history, underperforming other emerging markets in Asia.

at the White House by his army chief, Gen. Qamar Bajwa, according to Pakistani officials. Pakistan's military, which controls which policy towards Afghanistan has long been accused by Washington of supporting the Taliban.

Pakistan's relations with the U.S. have been strained in recent years. Pakistan has been supporting the Taliban since the mid-1

990s. The Pakistani government has supported the Taliban since the mid-1990s Islamabad more leverage than any other country over the group.

Washington for years blamed Pakistan for providing security, making a defeat impossible. In an attempt to coax Pakistan's support, the Obama administration ramped up $ 3 billion a year. But Pakistan saw it against the Taliban, and ties soured. Mr. Trump's administration cut aid to $ 71 million in the current financial year.

Mr. Trump has denounced Pakistan as a supporter of terrorism, and has sought international financial sanctions against it. In November, Mr. Trump tweeted that Pakistan receives billions of dollars in U.S.. aid but the country's leaders "do nothing for us."

Mr. Khan retorted, "Pak has been killed fighting US.

A month later, Mr. Trump wrote to the Pakistani leader to seek help with the Taliban peace talks.

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R., S.C.), a top ally of the Capitol Hill president, played a key role in arranging the White House meeting, according to Pakistani officials. Mr. Graham said he was "blown away" by Mr. Khan when he visited Islamabad in January and praised what he saw as a change in Pakistan's security policies.

Mr. Graham, who often golfs with the president, pledged at the time to urge the U.S. leader to see Mr. Khan. Similar personalities, he said

Mr. Graham visited Mr. Khan in Washington on Monday at the Pakistani Ambassador.

After the meeting, Mr. Graham said on Twitter: "Rebecca Ballhaus."

Write to Rebecca Ballhaus at [email protected] and Saeed Shah at [email protected]

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