WASHINGTON: The United States welcomed Pakistan’s decision to calmly resolve the issue over an Indian military helicopter’s violation of Pakistani airspace, saying that improved dialogue between the two countries helped them avert an incident.
A military chopper carrying Indian officers violated the Pakistani airspace on Sunday and was forced to land on Pakistan’s territory, miles away from the UN-monitored Line of Control in Kashmir.
But the Pakistani authorities resolved the issue in a peaceful manner, allowing the helicopter and military officers return to their base after sometime.
State Department Spokesperson Victoria Nuland said at the daily briefing that it is “very, very important” that such incidents are prevented from happening.
“My understanding is this was actually, as these things go, a relatively good news story, that as a result of the increased dialogue between India and Pakistan and the fact that they have reestablished some hotlines and emergency procedures, they were able to speak directly, thereby avoiding an incident,” the spokesperson said.
“So that’s a very, very good step, and the kind of step and the kind of progress we hope to see continue,” Nuland added.
Meanwhile, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will testify before Congress on Thursday on her visit to Pakistan and Afghanistan last week and the Obama administration’s approach to way forward in the region.
“She’s testifying on Afghanistan and Pakistan, so I think you’ll hear her strike many of the themes that she struck on her recent trip and report to the Congress on that trip and on the road forward,” Nuland said.
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