No Envoy For Kashmir, US Tells India

9 June 2009
The Times of India

Washington DC: The Obama administration on Tuesday said it would support more dialogue between India and Pakistan but said Washington has no plans to appoint a special envoy for Kashmir. Commenting on the new Manmohan Singh governments stand that it was keen to resume peace talks with Pakistan, subject to Islamabad acting decisively against terrorism, a state department official said the issue would be part of US under-secretary of state William Burns agenda when he visits New Delhi. “We would support more dialogue between the two countries. I’m sure that under-secretary Burns will talk about this issue among the many issues that he has on his agenda,’’ spokesman Ian Kelly said in at a briefing. There has been intense speculation in New Delhi that the government there may be resuming indirect contacts with Pakistan anticipating pressure from Washington, but the generic response here is that the US encourages any dialogue between the two sides without prejudice to India’s stand on Pakistan prosecuting the perpetrators of the Mumbai massacre. However, the Obama administration appears to be drawing the line at appointing a special envoy for Kashmir as demanded by sections of the Pakistani establishments. Asked if there was any prospect that a special envoy would be appointed with respect to Kashmir, Kelly said ‘’No, there are no plans to that effect.’’