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Guterres spokesperson declines to take position on Kashmir

Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has apparently not yet taken a public position on how India's decision to withdraw the special status of Kashmir squares with Security Council resolutions, his spokesperson Stephane Dujarric indicated on Tuesday.
Guterres spokesperson declines to take position on Kashmir

Asked at his daily briefing if Guterres believed that that the Indian action in "scrapping the special status of Jammu and Kashmir is a violation of the UN resolutions," Dujarric avoided giving a direct answer, saying only, "we said very clearly that we are following the developments in the region with concern. Secretary-General's position at this point is to urge all parties to exercise restraint."

Pressed by the reporter to directly answer the question, Dujarric said, "No, no, I understand what you asked, but unfortunately at this point you have to settle for that... (that) is my answer."

Dujarric said that a letter written by Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi to Guterres about the situation in Kashmir had not yet been received.

Dujarric said, "We are aware of press reports that a letter has been sent. As of short while ago we are not able to confirm that the letter has actually been receieved. Obviously once it is, it will be looked at and studied and acknowledged."

According to media reports, Qureshi had written to him about the "material changes" in Kashmir citing Security Council resolutions.

(Arul Louis can be reached at arul.l@.in and followed on Twitter @arulouis)

( With inputs from IANS )

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