Leader of Pakistan-held Kashmir Welcomes Trump Initiative

According to a White House spokesman, Trump 'reaffirmed the need to avoid escalation of the situation, and urged restraint on both sides'

U.S. President Donald Trump before the signing ceremony for the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund Act at the White House, Washington, D.C. July 29, 2019
Alex Brandon,AP

The president of Pakistani-administered Kashmir has welcomed efforts by U.S. President Donald Trump to lower tensions between Pakistan and India over the disputed Himalayan region and warned of a humanitarian crisis and food shortages in the Indian-held portion.

Sardar Masood Khan made the comments at a news conference Tuesday after Trump contacted the leaders of Pakistan and India to discuss Kashmir.

According to a White House spokesman, Trump "reaffirmed the need to avoid escalation of the situation, and urged restraint on both sides."

Muslim-majority Kashmir is divided between Pakistan and India and claimed by both. Tensions have increased since Aug. 5, when New Delhi imposed tight security restrictions and downgraded the autonomy of the portion it administers.