US President Donald Trump on Tuesday, February 25, said that he didn't discuss with Prime Minister Narendra Modi the issue of violence in Delhi over the controversial Citizenship Amendment Act or CAA. Addressing a solo press conference in Delhi, Trump said that he did discuss the matter of religious freedom with PM Modi and he told him that "he wants people to have religious freedom". The US President refused to comment on the Citizenship Act but again offered mediation on the Kashmir issue.
Few key takeaways from Trump's press conference:
Religious freedom: When asked about his discussion on the matter of religious freedom, Trump said: "We did talk about religious freedom. The PM said he wants people to have religious freedom. They have worked really hard on it.
Delhi CAA violence: At least nine people have been killed so far in Delhi in communal clashes between pro and anti-CAA protesters. When asked about it, Trump said, "I heard about the individual attacks (in Delhi) but I did not discuss it. It is up to India".
Kashmir issue: Trump, who had offered to mediate between India and Pakistan to resolve the Kashmir issue, once again reiterated his offer. "Anything I can do to mediate or help, I would do. They (Pakistan) are working on Kashmir. Kashmir has been a thorn in lots of people's sight for a long time. There are two sides to every story," he said.
Terrorism and Pakistan: The US President said that he discussed the issue of terrorism emanating from Pakistan with PM Modi at length. "We talked a lot about terrorism emanating from Pakistan at length today. There is no question that it is a problem. They are working on it. I said I will do whatever I can do to help because my relationship with both gentlemen (PM Modi and Pakistan PM Imran Khan) is so good," Trump said.
Trade ties with India: Trump has been vocal about tariffs India charges on American products. Trump mend no words and said that India charges a large number of tariffs on US motorcycles while there are virtually no tariffs on Indian motorbikes in the US. "I think you have to pay the highest tariff when you deal with India, Harley-Davidson has to pay tremendous tariffs when they send motorcycles here and when India sends to us, there is virtually no tariff," he said.