Monday Feb 24, 2020
ISLAMABAD: Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi expressed the hope that US President Donald Trump will discuss the issue of occupied Kashmir with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, saying that it was a "golden opportunity" to take up the issue with the Indian leadership.
The foreign minister said President Trump had said that he would discuss occupied Kashmir with Modi, adding that the situation of the disputed territory was not good as the area was under lockdown even after 200 days.
"Will this remain an indefinite lockdown? Will they [Indian authorities] continue to trample on the rights of the people of Kashmir? Till when?" he wondered.
Qureshi said that despite India's arrogance, there were voices in the country who were rising against Modi as they thought the India of Nehru and Gandhi was under threat from the incumbent Indian government.
He said that Indian atrocities in occupied Kashmir and the bloodshed that had taken place in the valley could not be swept under the carpet.
The foreign minister said that India was a huge market and the US wanted to trade with New Delhi, adding that new trade options were also beginning to gain ground in Pakistan and the US should remember this.
"Apart from South Asia, there is also southwest Asia where Pakistan can play a vital role," he said.
AFP adds: Trump arrived in India earlier on Monday for his maiden visit to the country. The president was accompanied by his wife Melania, daughter Ivanka, son-in-law Jared Kushner and top brass of his administration, reported the Indian Express.
During his address, the American president said that signs of progress with the US's relationship with Pakistan were emerging. "Our relationship with Pakistan is a very good one. Thanks to these efforts we are beginning to see signs of big progress with Pakistan and we are hopeful for reduced tensions, greater stability and the future of harmony for all of the nations of South Asia," he said.