‘Welcome steps to return union territory of Jammu and Kashmir to normalcy consistent with India’s democratic values’
Srinagar: The United States of America has indicated that its policy towards Kashmir remains unchanged and it is planning to work with on shared interests, however it addressed the region as ‘union territory of Jammu and Kashmir’.
“As a government, certainly as the State Department, we continue to follow developments in Jammu and Kashmir closely. Our policy has not changed,” the spokesperson for the US State Department, Ned Price, said at a press briefing.
He added that the Biden administration welcomes “steps to return the union territory of Jammu and Kashmir to full economic and political normalcy consistent with India’s democratic values”.
When questioned about the human rights situation in Kashmir, Price seemed hesitant before commenting, “I think the point we would want to make is that the United States has important relationships with India, as I said, but also with Pakistan. These relationships stand on their own in our view. They are not a zero-sum proposition when it comes to US foreign policy.”
He added that the US has “important shared interests in the region” and “will continue to work closely with the Pakistani authorities on those shared interests”.
The US supports the idea of a direct dialogue between Pakistan and India on Kashmir, and “for a reduction of tensions along the Line of Control, returning to that 2003 ceasefire”.