United Nations: Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir bin Mohamad said that he had suggested to his Indian counterpart Narendra Modi to resolve issues over Kashmir through “negotiations” rather than by “invasion” when Modi told him why his government revoked Jammu and Kashmir’s special status.
Mahathir had met Modi in Russia during an economic forum in the Russian city of Vladivostok earlier this month.
Addressing a press conference Friday in the UN Headquarters on the margins of the UN General Assembly, the Malaysian leader was asked if he has tried to talk to India and Pakistan to calm down and restraint themselves.
Mahathir said he had “a long session” with Prime Minister Modi in Vladivostok during which Modi explained why he took action to revoke Article 370 in Kashmir.
“He (Modi) also agreed with me that even India has solved problems through negotiations, with Bangladesh and others,” the Malaysian Prime Minister said.
Mahathir said he “suggested to him that since India has experience with negotiating to reduce conflict or to eliminate conflicts why not use negotiations to do so rather than to invade Kashmir.”
Mahathir said to this, Modi “didn’t commit to anything but I did tell him that it is up to him whether he would resort to negotiations to settle the problem of terrorism in the area.”
India has categorically told the international community that the scrapping of Article 370 was an internal matter.
India has rejected any scope for third party mediation between India and Pakistan on Kashmir, saying the two countries can discuss and resolve all issues bilaterally.
India has been taking up with Malaysia the issue of extradition of radical preacher Zakir Naik.
The Malaysian Prime Minister September 17 had said that Modi did not request the extradition of radical preacher Zakir Naik, but India rebutted, saying the issue did come up when the two leaders met in Russia.
Naik, a 53-year-old televangelist, left India in 2016 and subsequently moved to Malaysia, where he was granted permanent residency by the government of former Prime Minster Najib Razak.
Naik is wanted by Indian authorities since 2016 for alleged money laundering and inciting extremism through hate speeches.