WASHINGTON: The United States has urged Pakistan and India to avoid steps that escalate the tension between the two nuclear-armed countries, and instead boost cooperation against the common threat of terrorism.
Responding to a question about the Indian claim of conducting a “surgical strike” inside Pakistan, US State Department Spokesman John Kirby on Thursday stated that they have seen reports and following the situation closely. “We also understand that the Indian and Pakistani militaries have been in communication. We believe that continued communication is obviously important to reduce tensions”.
The spokesman made his comments amid Indian claims of carrying out a “surgical strike”, which has been rejected by the ISPR which said that there had been no surgical strike by India and that there had been cross LOC fire initiated by India which is an existential phenomenon. The ISPR said that rebranding cross border fire a surgical strike is a fabrication of truth by the Indian establishment.
The US spokesman urged Pakistan and India to increase communication and avoid steps that increase the tension. “Our message to both sides has been the same, in terms of encouraging them to increase communication to deal with this threat and to avoid steps that escalate the tensions.”
He said the United States want to see increased cooperation against very shared common threat of terrorism posed to both countries, and to see steps being taken to deal with it by all sides.
“We’ve repeatedly expressed our concerns regarding the danger that terrorism poses to the region. And we all know that terrorism, in many ways, knows no border,” he said, adding that it was something the United States was keenly focused on.
To a question, the spokesman stated that during a recent conversation with his Indian counterpart, US Secretary of State John Kerry had condemned terrorism in all its form and cautioned against any escalation in tensions in the region.
Replying another question, Spokesman Kirby said that the United States understand that militaries of both Pakistan and India are in communication. “We encourage that”.
Mr. Kirby said the United States has stated many times that terrorism was a common threat everybody faced in the region. “And we believe it’s important for everybody in the region, and we’re obviously willing to, and have proven, willing to contribute to those efforts, to take that on, to take that on as a shared regional challenge.”