Malaysia hopes India, Pak exercise 'utmost restraint'

Malaysia Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad speaks during the opening ceremony of the 20th Asia Oil & Gas Conference in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. (Reuters Photo)

Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad on Thursday expressed hope that India and Pakistan would exercise "utmost restraint" to prevent further escalation that could be detrimental to the peace and stability in Jammu and Kashmir.

The Indian government revoked Article 370 which granted special status for Jammu and Kashmir and bifurcated the border state into two Union Territories on Monday. The move won also Parliament's approval.

In response, Pakistan on Wednesday expelled the Indian High Commissioner and decided to downgrade the diplomatic ties with India over what it called New Delhi's "unilateral and illegal" move.

Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan on Monday briefed Mahathir on the situation in Kashmir.

"Prime Minister Imran Khan among others, referred to the need to respect the relevant UN Security Council resolutions related to Jammu and Kashmir," Mahathir's office said in a statement.

"Malaysia would like to encourage all stakeholders to abide by the relevant USNC resolutions on Jammu and Kashmir towards the maintenance of international peace and security," the statement said.

It said that Malaysia was concerned over the recent developments in Jammu and Kashmir.

"As a close partner to both India and Pakistan, Malaysia places high hope that the two neighbours will exercise utmost restraint to prevent further escalation that could be detrimental to the peace, stability and prosperity in the region," the statement said.

Malaysia always believes that dialogues and consultations are the best routes to a peaceful and amicable solution over the long-standing issue, it said. 

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