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Kashmir bilateral issue, says US

By The Assam Tribune

WASHINGTON, Oct 22 (IANS) - Making its stance clear on the Kashmir issue, the US Friday said the matter should be resolved through bilateral talks between India and Pakistan. It rejected Pakistan's request to intervene in the dispute.

"We recognise the importance of Kashmir to both India and Pakistan. We absolutely want to see tensions eased and ultimately a resolution to the situation in Kashmir," State Department spokesman PJ Crowley told reporters at the Foreign Press Center here.

"That we believe needs to come through additional dialogue between Pakistan and India. We have not been asked by both countries to play a particular role. This is the reason why, for a number of reasons we continue to encourage further dialogue between India and Pakistan," Crowley said in response to a question.

His comments came a day after Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi, who is currently in Washington leading a delegation for US-Pakistan security and strategic dialogue, sought US intervention in resolving the Kashmir issue.

Crowley described both India and Pakistan as US allies and said his country will continue to encourage both countries in their efforts to achieve piece and stability in the region.

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