Much politics unfolded after US President Barack Obama accepted Prime Minister Narendra Modi's invite to be the Chief Guest for the Republic Day parade, the first American President to do so.
Obama, who seems to have taken the larger regional impact of his visit into consideration, immediately called Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on Friday, hours after his confirmation, Press Trust of India reported.
The call was apparently to assure the Pakistani leader of continued ties with the US, and Sharif prodded the US President to rake up the Kashmir issue during the visit.
"The Prime Minister also urged President Obama to take up the cause of Kashmir with the Indian leadership, as its early resolution would bring enduring peace, stability and economic cooperation to Asia," a statement from the Pakistan Prime Minister's Office said.
The phone call by Obama is being seen as an attempt to ensure sentiments in Islamabad are not hurt by his visit to India, given that relations between the two neighbours have strained considerably in the recent months. Sharif also reportedly recalled an invitation he extended to Obama last year in Washington, and the latter has assured of a future visit.
Over the telephonic interaction, the two leaders "reaffirmed the valued relationship between the two countries and the importance of the U.S.-Pakistan Strategic Dialogue.. and they reiterated their commitment to combat terrorism and extremism and to promote peace and stability in the region," as per the White House statement.
Pakistan has been relentlessly pushing for the Kashmir issue to be on the international scene, and Sharif had also brought up the issue at the United Nations General Assembly in the United States last month.
Following that, Pakistan has also made other attempts to get the United States involved in the sensitive issue, even as the latter has consistently pulled up the terror-ridden country for increasingly becoming a haven for terrorism.
On the other hand, India-US relations seem to be going on the right track after almost a year since diplomatic ties had soured, and following Modi's visit to the US in September, the bilateral ties between the two nations have been on an upswing.
The two leaders also shared a good personal rapport during the visit and even during their interactions at the ASEAN and G20 Summits held earlier this month.
Modi on Friday tweeted about Obama's visit.
"This Republic Day, we hope to have a friend over...invited President Obama to be the 1st US President to grace the occasion as Chief Guest, he tweeted.
The White House announced the confirmation through this statement - "At the invitation of Prime Minister Modi, the President will travel to India in January 2015 to participate in the Indian Republic Day celebration in New Delhi as the Chief Guest. This visit will mark the first time a U.S. president will have the honor of attending Republic Day, which commemorates the adoption of India's constitution. The President will meet with the Prime Minister and Indian officials to strengthen and expand the U.S.-India strategic partnership".
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