Kolkata, Nov 9: Resenting to the media reports that US President-elect Barack Obama was speculating on appointing former US President Bill Clinton as a special envoy on Jammu Kashmir, External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee on Saturday, Nov 8 said Kashmir would remain a bilateral issue between India and Pakistan that would be sorted out through dialogue. "In respect of Kashmir our position is stated. Essentially this is a bilateral relation between India and Pakistan. The problem also remains as a bilateral problem between India and Pakistan. We are trying to resolve the problem in the context of Simla agreement, subsequent Lahore agreement, series of discussions which have taken place and currently within the framework of composite dialogue," Mukherjee told reporters on the sidelines of curtain raiser function of BIMSTEC (Bay of Bengal Initiative for MultiSectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation) summit here.
During a recent interview, Obama had suggested that the United States should try to help resolve the Kashmir dispute so that Pakistan can focus on hunting down Islamist militants on its north-western frontier- who in turn threaten stability in Afghanistan.
Kashmir has long been a bone of contention between India and Pakistan with both countries claiming the region in full but ruling it in parts.
Pakistan and India have fought three wars, two of them over Kashmir, since they gained independence from British rule in 1947.
Until a few weeks ago the two armies had largely stuck to a ceasefire agreed in late 2003. Lately there have been several exchanges of fire across the Line of Control, the de facto border dividing Kashmir between India and Pakistan.