USIP holds discussion on dangerous escalation in Pakistan-India ties

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WASHINGTON, Dec 16, (APP): A Washington-based think-tank, the United States Institute of Peace (USIP), is holding a discussion next week on the volatile situation between the nuclear-armed states Pakistan and India and analyze the potential US diplomatic role under the next administration to defuse the crisis.
Recent skirmishes across the Line of Control and clashes during public
protests have escalated tensions between India and Pakistan over the past year to a dangerous degree, the institute said in a statement to introduce the December 19 event.
“The resulting military and civilian casualties fuel a volatile situation between these two nuclear-armed neighbors that poses mounting risks for regional security as well as long-term U.S. interests for peace and stability in South Asia,” said a statement.
South Asia did not feature prominently during the U.S. presidential
campaign, but the U.S. holds important strategic interests on counter-terrorism, trade and development in the region, the statement said adding that the U.S. had played an important role in de-escalating tensions between India and Pakistan.
A diverse group of South Asia experts will discuss the dangers of a persistently hostile India-Pakistan relationship, and what policies the next U.S. administration could pursue to manage crises and promote greater peace and security in South Asia.
Those who will participate include Shamila Chaudhary, Senior Advisor to
the Dean, Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies, Toby Dalton, Co-Director, Nuclear Policy Program, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, Sadanand Dhume, Resident Fellow, American Enterprise Institute and Sameer Lalwani, Deputy Director, South Asia Program, Stimson Center.
In a recent interview, Vice President-elect Mike Pence observed that
incoming President Donald Trump had the right touch to break the impasse on issues like Kashmir, which was the main source of tension between Pakistan and India.
The Vice President-elect recognized that there had been great tension between India and Pakistan in recent days, which had resulted in violence along the disputed Kashmir region.
Pence said in the interview that Trump recognized that both Pakistan and India were nuclear powers “and making sure that, that they know that when this administration takes office, that it intends to be fully engaged in the region and fully engaged with both nations to advance peace and security.”
Prime Minister, Muhammed Nawaz Sharif and the President-elect also
had a telephonic conversation early this month and Trump expressed a desire for continued US engagement on building the relationship with both of the nuclear powers.