UN chief calls India-Pakistan LoC ceasefire accord ‘positive step’

United Nations, February 26 : UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has welcomed as a “positive step” the agreement between the militaries of India and Pakistan to observe a ceasefire at the Line-of-Control in the disputed Kashmir region, and hoped that it would pave the way for more talks between the two countries.

“The Secretary-General is encouraged by the joint statement issued by the militaries of India and Pakistan on their agreement to observing the ceasefire at the Line of Control in Kashmir and engaging through established mechanisms,” his spokesman, Stephane Dujarric, said in a statement read out at the regular noon briefing at the UN Headquarters in New York.

“He (UN chief) hopes that this positive step will provide an opportunity for further dialogue,” the statement said.

Replying to a question from media, the spokesman said the UN chief had no plans as yet to contact the leaders of India and Pakistan for starting the process to resolve the decades-old Kashmir dispute.

He said the secretary-general’s good offices were always available for any member state who would request it.

The President of UN General Assembly, Volkan Bozkir, also welcomed the agreement, which, he said, “set an example for others and demonstrates the General Assembly’s value.”

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