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We support direct dialogue between India & Pak on Kashmir: US State Department

File photo. Photograph:( WION )

WION Web Team Washington Aug 08, 2019, 06.56 AM (IST)

The US Department of State on Wednesday said that it continues to "support direct dialogue between India and Pakistan on Kashmir and other issues of concern".

"We call upon on all parties to maintain peace and stability along the Line of Control(LoC), including taking firm and resolute steps to combat cross-border terrorism," the US State Department said.

"We continue to support direct dialogue between India and Pakistan on Kashmir and other issues of concern," it added. 

In a similar statement, representative Eliot L. Engel, Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee and Senator Bob Menendez, Ranking Member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee said that Pakistan must refrain from any retaliatory aggression - including support for infiltrations across the Line of Control in the wake of India scrapping Article 370 which gave special status to Jammu and Kashmir.

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The US State Department's move comes amid increased tension between India and Pakistan after the Indian government abrogated Article 370 that granted special status to Jammu and Kashmir. On Wednesday, Pakistan partially closed its airspace on the eastern front with India greatly affecting air traffic.

Pakistan had earlier closed its entire air space along the Indian border after Indian fighter jets conducted air strikes on terrorist hideout at Balakot on February 26th. The airspace will be closed from August 6 to September 5 between 02:45 to 11:00(Pakistan standard time) every day except Sundays. 

The Imran Khan government also decided to expel the Indian High Commissioner to Pakistan and informed the Indian government that the new high commissioner-designate of Pakistan to India will not be taking charge.

Story highlights

The US State Department's move comes amid increased tension between India and Pakistan after the Indian government abrogated Article 370 that granted special status to Jammu and Kashmir.