US, India Dismiss Reports Linking Kashmir With UNSC Seat30 September 2010
The Indian Express
Washington DC: The US has categorically denied there is any link between resolving the Kashmir issue with the Obama Administration endorsing India's bid for a permanent seat in the United Nations Security Council (UNSC). 'I don't see a link between the two,' State Department spokesman P J Crowley told reporters when asked about reports that the Obama Administration has linked its endorsement for the UNSC seat with India resolving the Kashmir dispute. 'We want to see India and Pakistan work collectively together to resolve tensions regarding Kashmir. We understand that India and a number of countries and the US are all so interested in UN reform, including reforms within the Security Council. Those are conversations which are ongoing with a wide range of countries,' Crowley said. The State Department spokesman said that issue of India getting a permanent seat in the UNSC would come up in the ongoing dialogue with India. 'I can't predict whether it will come up in November (when the US President visits India),' he added. Earlier, National Security Advisor Shivshankar Menon has said that as far as New Delhi was concerned, things were moving in the right direction for India to get a permanent seat at the UN Security Council. 'As far as we are concerned in terms of distance or the gap of the world's attitude towards the UNSC reform and what we consider the desirable outcome that gap has steadily narrowed,' Menon said in response to a question at Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. He said meaningful negotiations were going on in the UN on not just Security Council reform but the reform of the UN itself. 'That's the real prospects. How the US chooses to do this, when the US chooses to do this, it is for the US to decide. We have made our views known, I do not think, we are shying away, they (the US) know what we expect,' Menon said. Early this week, India has rebutted a media report that the US has linked UNSC permanent seat with finding a solution for the Kashmir imbroglio. There were media reports that President Obama would be carrying the message on his visit to India that settling the Kashmir issue was the key to getting a permanent seat at UNSC. Dismissing reports as speculative, official sources said India was eminently qualified to become a UNSC permanent member and there was no possible link with the Kashmir issue. Foreign Secretary Nirupama Rao had said in New York that while the US was not fully sold on the idea of becoming a permanent member of the UNSC, there has been positive movement in that direction. 'I am not saying we have reached the destination of full American support for our case but certainly we are moving from divergence to greater convergence,' she said.