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PM Modi holds telephonic conversation with US president

In the first highest-level interaction after India’s announcement on Jammu and Kashmir, Prime Minister Narendra Modi held a telephonic conversation with US President Donald Trump and conveyed that extreme rhetoric and incitement to anti-India violence by certain leaders in the region was not conducive to peace. 

Prime Minister Modi’s comments assume importance in the wake of Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan’s provocative comments against the Government of India and Indian action in the last few days. A Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) release said, the 30-minute conversation between Modi and Trump covered bilateral and regional matters. In Washington, the White House said, the President conveyed the importance of reducing tensions between India and Pakistan and maintaining peace in the region. It said that during the talks, the two leaders discussed regional developments and the ways to strengthen US-India economic ties through increased trade. 

During his conversation, Prime Minister Modi recalled their meeting in Osaka on the sidelines of G-20 summit earlier this year. He expressed hope that India’s Commerce Minister and the US Trade Representative would meet at an early date to discuss bilateral trade prospects for mutual benefit.

In a later development, President Trump, called Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan and urged him to moderate rhetoric with India over the situation in Jammu and Kashmir in an effort to reduce tensions. Trump’s call with Khan – the second in less than a week – came soon after his conversation with Prime Minister Narendra Modi yesterday. The White House said in a readout of the telephone call that Trump reaffirmed the need to avoid escalation of the situation.