A constructive dialogue between India and Pakistan is for the betterment of the people of the two countries, the United States has said and reiterated that its relationships with either of them is not zero-sum.
“We have a global strategic partnership with India. I have also spoken about the deep partnership we have with Pakistan. These relationships in our mind are not zero-sum. We do not view them in relation to one another,” US State Department spokesperson Ned Price told reporters at his daily news conference on Monday.
Each of them is indispensable to the United States and to the promotion and the pursuit of the shared goals that we have with India and Pakistan, he said in response to a question.
“The fact that we have partnerships with both countries leaves us not wanting to see a war of words between India and Pakistan. We would like to see constructive dialogue between India and Pakistan. We think that is for the betterment of the Pakistani and Indian people. There is much work that we can do together bilaterally,” Price said. “There are differences that, of course, need to be addressed between India and Pakistan. The United States stands ready to assist as a partner to both,” he asserted.
“The United States has a global strategic partnership with India. These relationships stand on their own; it is not zero-sum.“We see the importance – the indispensability really – of maintaining valuable partnerships with both our Indian and Pakistani friends. Each of these relationships also happens to be multifaceted,” he said.
“So even as we deepen our global strategic partnership with India, we also have a relationship in which we can be candid and frank with one another. Where we have disagreements or concerns, we voice those just as we would with our Pakistani friends as well,” Price said.Responding to another question, Price said countries the world over welcomed when Prime Minister Narendra Modi told Russian President Vladimir Putin this summer that this is not the era of war.
“I think it is notable that the communique emanating from the G20 also had very similar language – I think a testament to the fact that this was language and this was a call that resonated in this country, in South Asia, in Europe, and around the world. The United States certainly welcomes it,” he said.
“It is also important because India has a relationship with Russia that the United States does not have. For decades, I should say Russia was prepared to be a partner to India in a way that the United States at the time was not. Of course, that has changed in recent decades,” he observed.
“It is a bipartisan legacy of the last several administrations, perhaps starting most notably with the administration of President George W Bush that the United States is now a partner of, we hope first resort for India. There is a lot of good that we can do together, not only for our two countries, but around the world, and I think we will see a good example of that in the coming year, when India hosts the G20,” he said.
“I know we will have an opportunity to travel to India, to be in close touch with India in the context of the G20, and we will be able to see what cooperation between our two countries and a broader set of countries can provide,” Price added.