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Nawaz Sharif dials Pak army chief ahead of UN address, likely to raise Kashmir issue

Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif today held a telephonic conversation with Pakistan’s powerful army chief General Raheel Sharif.

India TV News Desk, New Delhi [ Published on: September 21, 2016 16:20 IST ]
Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif at UNGA
Image Source : AP Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif at UNGA

Hours ahead of his speech at the United Nations General Assembly where he is expected to raise the Kashmir issue, Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif today held a telephonic conversation with Pakistan’s powerful army chief General Raheel Sharif.  

Sharif's address at the UNGA session comes amid the rising tension with India in the backdrop of terror attack at Uri army base camp in which 18 soldiers were killed. 

An official from the Pakistan Prime Minister’s Office said the two on Tuesday night discussed the situation in Kashmir and tense relations with India after the terrorist attack. 

Sharif had a plan to forcefully highlight the Kashmir violence, but the scenario changed after the Uri terrorist attack which put the issue of cross-border militancy in the spotlight. 

“The prime minister might strike a balance in his speech. He would talks about the Indian atrocities in Kashmir but also would be conciliatory to end tension,” said the official.  

Sharif may also offer proposals to address the Kashmir issue, including emphasis on implementing UN resolutions and the mediatory role of the international community. 

No statement was issued after the talks between the two Sharifs, which was their first contact since the Uri attack. Geo TV reported that the conversation between the two leaders shows that the situation after Uri attack was serious.  

The Uri incident was one of the deadliest attacks on Indian Army in recent years, as heavily-armed terrorists stormed a battalion headquarters of the force. 

Four militants involved in the terror strike were killed. India’s DGMO Lt Gen Ranbir Singh has said the four killed were foreign terrorists and had carried with them items which had Pakistani markings and that initial reports indicated that they belonged to Pakistan-based Jaish-E-Mohammed group.  

Sharif is poised to address the 71st UNGA session in New York later on Wednesday. 

While Pakistan has raised the Kashmir issue at the high-level segments of the General Assembly and other UN platforms in previous years, Sharif appears set to take an even more aggressive stand on Kashmir at the world body, having vowed in Pakistan to "emphatically highlight" the issue and the alleged human rights abuses by India.  

"Pakistan will continue to extend moral, diplomatic and political support to Kashmiris," Sharif had said last week, alleging that atrocities in Kashmir had touched extremes.  

Last year, Sharif, raising the Kashmir issue in the General Assembly, had proposed a four-point "peace initiative" with India on Kashmir.

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