PM Narendra Modi, Imran Khan to face off at 74th UNGA session today
Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Pakistan counterpart Imran Khan are going to share the stage at the 74th session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) on Friday. This would be the first time after abrogation of Article 370 that the two leaders would be sharing the same platform.
The 74th UNGA session will start around 9:00 pm IST on Friday. There will be 112 heads of state, nearly 48 heads of government and over 30 foreign ministers present during the General Debate at UN headquarters in New York.
Tensions between India and Pakistan spiked after the abrogation of Article 370 in Kashmir on August 5. This decision evoked strong reactions from Pakistan, which downgraded ties with India and expelled the Indian ambassador.
Pakistan has been trying to internationalise the Kashmir issue after India withdrew the special status of Jammu and Kashmir. However, New Delhi has asserted the abrogation of Article 370 was an 'internal matter' of India.
Meanwhile, on Thursday, Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi boycotted Dr S Jaishankar's opening statement at the SAARC Council of foreign ministers, saying Pakistan will not engage with India until and unless it lifts the 'siege' in Kashmir.
However, Jaishankar, in a veiled attack on Pakistan stated, "Elimination of terrorism in all its forms is a "precondition" for fruitful cooperation in South Asia."
US on India-Pakistan spat over Kashmir
US President Donald Trump said he discussed Kashmir with the top leadership of India and Pakistan during his meetings with them and offered to help the two nuclear-armed neighbours with "arbitration or mediation".
"With respect to Pakistan and India, we talked about Kashmir. Whatever help I can be, I said, I offered, whether it's arbitration or mediation or whatever it has to be," Trump said in his opening remarks, offering to mediate for the fourth time.
Trump said he will "do whatever he can, because, they are at very serious odds right now and hopefully that will get better".
"You look at the two gentlemen heading those two countries, two good friends of mine. I said, fellows work it out, just work it out. Those are two nuclear countries, gotta work it out."