France said on Tuesday that Kashmir was a bilateral issue between India and Pakistan and that steps should be taken to establish ‘lasting peace’.
Kashmir came up during a phone conversation between Jean-Yves Le Drian, Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs and his Pakistan counterpart Shah Mahmood Qureshi. This comes amid tension between the two Asian neighbours over the scrapping of Article 370 in Jammu and Kashmir.
During the conversation, Jean-Yves Le Drian recalled France’s constant position on Kashmir saying “it is up to the two countries, under the framework of their bilateral political dialogue, to resolve this issue so as to establish lasting peace,” according to French ministry spokesperson.
Watch | Bajwa extension: How Imran Khan is using Kashmir for domestic power politics
He made a call to the parties for restraint, de-escalation, and easing the situation. “It is essential to abstain from any measure likely to aggravate tensions.”
The statement is another blow to Pakistan that has made several failed attempts to internationalise the Kashmir issue, even as it was snubbed at the United Nations Security Council, and told by the countries, including the United States, and Russia that the matter remains bilateral
On Tuesday, Pakistan said it would approach the International Court of Justice over the scrapping of special status to J&K. “An in-principle decision has been taken to take the issue of Kashmir to the International Court of Justice,” Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi told ARY News TV.
Prime Minister Imran Khan told a rare joint sitting of Pakistan’s Parliament on August 6 that he will raise the Kashmir issue at every forum including the UN Security Council and also take the matter to the ICJ.
(With inputs from agencies)
Aug 21, 2019 16:46 IST