UN secretary-general Ban Ki-moon on Friday offered to act as mediator between India and Pakistan to de-escalate the growing tensions over Indian occupied Kashmir.

The offer came after Pakistan’s ambassador met with the UN chief and urged him to personally intervene.

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Ban Ki Moon urged the “both sides to exercise maximum restraint and take immediate steps to de-escalate the situation,” a statement from his spokesperson said.

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The UN chief said India and Pakistan should address differences through diplomacy and dialogue, and offered to mediate.

“His good offices are available, if accepted by both sides,” the UN spokesperson said.
Tensions between the two arch rivals have been boiling since the Indian government accused Pakistan-based militants of launching an assault on an army base in Kashmir earlier this month that killed 19 soldiers.

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Ban Ki Moon had recently expressed regrets over the fact that UNMOGIP (United Nations Military Observer Group in India and Pakistan) has not been able to fully function due to India’s non-cooperation, adding that the UN’s military mission is only able to operate on the Pakistani controlled side of the LoC as India refuses to accept its functioning on the other side and opposes its expansion.

The statement came after Maleeha Lodhi, Pakistan’s permanent representative to the UN, met with the Secretary General on Friday.