WASHINGTON: The US has asked India and Pakistan to resolve their differences through diplomacy and not through violence.
“We have continued to encourage India and Pakistan to find ways to resolve their differences, not through violence, but through diplomacy,” White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest told reporters at his daily news conference.
“We have condemned violence, particularly terrorist attacks,” he said.
He was responding to a question on India’s decision of not attending the SAARC Summit in Islamabad in November citing continuous cross border terrorism by Pakistan against India.
The State Department too refrained to make any comment on India’s decision in this regard and said it is for the New Delhi to comment.
“I would refer you to the Government of India to comment on their decision of not attending this meeting,” State Department Deputy Spokesperson Mark Toner said.
“What we have said many times from the podium – is we want to see closer and normal relations between India and Pakistan,” he told reporters at his daily news conference.
“It would benefit the region. We want to see de-escalation in the political discourse between the two countries and greater communication and coordination between them,” Toner said.
He said it is not for the US to “offer a prescription” to de-escalate tension between the two South Asian neighbours.
“It is in mutual interest for both the countries to put aside tensions and establish more normal channels of communication,” the deputy spokesperson said.
He also insisted that the US continues to push Pakistan for taking strong action against groups engaged in terrorist activities in the neighbourhood.
“While we have seen Pakistan make progress on some of the terrorist groups operating within its own borders and carrying out attacks within its borders, we continue to put pressure on them to respond to those groups who are seeking safe haven on Pakistan’s borders,” Toner added.