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  UN chief mulls over engaging India, Pakistan for resolution of Kashmir crisis
   
 
UNITED NATIONS, March 11 (INP): UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres is considering holding talks with officials from India and Pakistan on the deteriorating situation in Kashmir. The UN chief’s intention to practically indulging in a long-standing peace process and to engage the nuclear-armed neighbors for resolution of Kashmir conflict was confirmed by his spokesperson. “He will talk to different officials if it helps move the process along. That’s something that he is looking into,” Deputy Spokesman Farhan Haq said while responding to a question whether Guterres, who took over as UN chief in January, has come to any conclusion about how to deal with the situation in Kashmir. “Beyond that, I have nothing new to say about the issue,” he added. To a question regarding any timeline as to when the UN chief will talk to leaders from the two countries, Farhan Haq said, “As with any number of long-running situations, there are ‘a lot of complex issues’ that need to be examined.” “The UN chief will look into the issue, and certainly, he will try to see what can be done to improve the situation on the ground,” Haq said. The recently sworn in secretary-general offered to play a role of an honest broker between Pakistan and India amid escalating tensions between the two countries last month. The UN chief made the offer during a meeting with Pakistan’s UN Ambassador Maleeha Lodhi, who gave him an extensive briefing on the situation in Kashmir. Kashmir’s turmoil escalated as fighter Burhan Wani was martyred by Indian forces amid an operation in July last year. Widespread protests erupted in the valley against the illegal killing. As many as 100 citizens who took to streets against Indian oppression were gunned down by the Indian army adding fuel to the fire. Tensions between Pakistan and India developed after an army camp in Indian occupied Kashmir was attacked in Uri leaving 18 soldiers dead. India blamed Pakistan for the attack,however, Pakistan denied the allegations and termed it a traditional Indian post-attack mindset to point fingers at Pakistan. INP/AJ
 
 
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