‘Tough Situation’: Trump After Calls With PM Modi, Imran Khan

US President Donald Trump urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Pakistan PM Imran Khan to work towards reducing tension in the region over Kashmir, describing the situation as "tough".

Trump asked Khan over phone on Monday, 19 August, to "moderate rhetoric" with India, soon after a 30-minute conversation with Modi, during which the Indian leader raised the issue "extreme rhetoric and incitement to anti-India violence" by leaders of Pakistan.

“A tough situation but good conversation,” tweeted Trump after the conversation.

Earlier this month, India abrogated provisions of Article 370 of the Constitution to withdraw Jammu and Kashmir's special status and bifurcated the state into Union Territories, evoking strong reactions from Pakistan.

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What Did Trump-Modi Speak About

Modi's comments on extreme rhetoric by some regional leaders was an obvious reference to Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan, who has been making provocative comments against Modi government and Indian action in the last few days.

The 30-minute conversation between Modi and Trump covered bilateral and regional matters, and was marked by the "warmth and cordiality which characterises the relations between the two leaders", a Prime Minister's Office (PMO) release said.

“In the context of the regional situation, the prime minister stated that extreme rhetoric and incitement to anti-India violence by certain leaders in the region was not conducive to peace,” it said.

The conversation between Modi and Trump took place two days after the US President asked Khan to resolve the Kashmir issue with India bilaterally during a telephonic conversation.

Khan Tirade Against India

Continuing with his tirade against India over the Kashmir issue, Khan on Sunday had called the Indian government "fascist" and "supremacist", alleging that it poses a threat to Pakistan as well as to the minorities in India.

He also said the world must also seriously consider the safety and security of India's nuclear arsenal as it impacts not just the region but the world.

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Trump spoke by telephone with Khan to discuss "the need to reduce tensions and moderate rhetoric with India over the situation in Jammu and Kashmir," the White House said in a readout of the call.

During the conversation, Trump "reaffirmed the need to avoid escalation of the situation, and urged restraint" on both sides, the White House said.

The two leaders also agreed to work towards strengthening US-Pakistan economic and trade cooperation, it added.

(With inputs from PTI.)

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