UN chief says he will help Indo-Pak dialogue on Kashmir


A day after the UN General Assembly approved him for a second term as secretary-general of the UN, Ban Ki-moon said Thursday he would be discussing the long-standing Kashmir dispute with the leaders of India and Pakistan to help resolve it peacefully through a dialogue.
“I will have opportunities in the future, as in the past, (to) discuss the matter with leaders of both India and Pakistan how we can help or how this issue can be resolved peacefully through dialogue,” the UN chief said in response to a question at an interaction with correspondents of news agencies accredited to the U.N, says a press release received here on Thursday from Permanent Mission of Pakistan to the UN.
The secretary-general was specifically asked whether he would take more active interest in his second term in helping to resolve the Kashmir dispute over which the United Nations has passed several resolutions.
“I am aware of the positions of both India and Pakistan leaders. They have been discussing this matter at foreign secretary level, and foreign ministerial level meetings have taken place.” I understand there is going to be one soon,” Ban said. “All these issues should be resolved peacefully through dialogue between the two governments,” he added.
On Afghanistan, the secretary-general said that there was growing consensus that stability in the war-torn country could not be established through military means only. The U.N. was supporting the Afghan-led peace process, he said. There was need for dialogue with opposition forces, including the Taliban. The United Nations was not dealing with the negotiations taking place with the Taliban, but its mission was providing technical support to the Afghan Peace and Reconciliation Council. On Tuesday, after his approval by the 192-member Assembly for a second five -year term, Ban took the oath of office, placing his hand on the original UN Charter and promising to discharge his functions in the interests of the entire UN and to not seek or accept instructions from any government.
“As Secretary-General, I will work as a harmonizer and bridge-builder – among Member States, within the United Nations system, and between the United Nations and a rich diversity of international partners,” Ban said.