U.S. President Donald Trump aims to mediate between India and Pakistan over Kashmir, saying on Tuesday that the situation was “explosive”.
The U.S. president has spoken with both Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan in recent days, trying to diffuse tensions.
He will likely meet Modi this weekend on the sidelines of the G7 summit in France, though India has already rejected the US offer to mediate on the issue.
“I think we are helping the situation, but there are tremendous problems between those two countries as you know and I will do the best I can do to mediate or do something,” Trump said.
“Kashmir is a very complicated place. You have the Hindus and the Muslims and I wouldn’t say they get along so great,” Trump said at the White House. “Frankly, it’s a very explosive situation.”
Trump heaped praise on both Modi and Khan, noting that he recently hosted the Pakistani leader at the White House.
“They are great people and they love their countries. They are in a very tough situation. Kashmir is a very tough situation,” he said.
The U.S. under Trump cut aid to Pakistan, a Cold War-era ally, and the recent Khan visit did not spark any pledges to renew the assistance, amid concerns in Washington about Islamabad’s focus on fighting terrorism.
Pakistan and India control only parts of Kashmir, but each has laid claim to the entire region since they gained independence from Britain in 1947. Another part of Kashmir is controlled by China.