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    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) - Pakistani Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi has assured the United States that Islamabad will deal firmly with all terrorists in the country, including Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM), US National Security Advisor John Bolton said in a statement on Monday.

    "Spoke with Pakistani [Foreign Minister] Qureshi to encourage meaningful steps against JeM and other terrorist groups operating from Pakistan", Bolton said via Twitter on Monday. "The [Foreign Minister] assured me that Pakistan would deal firmly with all terrorists and will continue steps to deescalate tensions with India".

    The United States has pressed Pakistan to do more to dismantle terrorist groups seeking to use the country as a safe haven.

    READ MORE: Mastermind of Deadly Kashmir Convoy Attack Killed by Indian Forces — Reports

    Tensions between India and Pakistan escalated last month, after the Pakistani military shot down two Indian warplanes in the disputed region of Kashmir, responding to an earlier airstrike by Indian aircraft against what New Delhi said was a camp of Jaish-e-Mohammad group, considered terrorists by India and located on the Pakistani soil across the so-called Line of Control, separating India- and Pakistan- controlled areas of Kashmir.

    The Indian airstrike came after a deadly 14 February attack by Jaish-e-Mohammad on the Indian paramilitary police force in Kashmir. While India has accused Pakistan of supporting the militants and having a "direct hand" in the incident, Pakistan, in turn, has rejected the allegations, accusing India of being responsible for alleged human rights violations taking place in Kashmir.

    Jaish-e-Mohammed is a terrorist group that perpetrates frequent attacks in the Jammu and Kashmir state. The group, which is reportedly affiliated with Taliban movement and al-Qaeda terrorist organization, aims to separate Kashmir from India and to merge it into neighboring Pakistan.

    READ MORE: India to Give US Proof Pakistan Used F-16 Jets in Kashmir Air Battle — Reports

    Both India and Pakistan along with China have been contesting Kashmir since 1947. The state is currently divided between the three sides, with the so-called Line of Control serving as a de facto border between the Indian and the Pakistani-controlled parts of Kashmir.

    *Taliban, al-Qaeda are terrorist groups banned in Russia and many other countries.


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    de-escalation, terrorism, tensions, Shah Mahmood Qureshi, John Bolton, United States, Pakistan
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