WASHINGTON: Amid Pakistan-instigated ferment and violence from Kabul to Kashmir, Prime Minister Narendra Modi told US President Donald Trump in a 30-minute phone call on Monday that “extreme rhetoric and incitement to anti-India violence by certain leaders in the region was not conducive to peace.” The conversation took place even as the US efforts to arrive at a peace deal in Afghanistan was marred by a horrific bombing at a Kabul wedding on Saturday where the perpetrator was identified as a Pakistani, and India struggled to contain insurgency in Kashmir. Pakistan, which sees Kashmir as its “jugular vein” and Afghanistan as its “strategic depth” against India, is perceived as the spoiler in both places, and although the readout of the phone call did not identify Pakistan by name, it was quite obvious. “In the context of the regional situation, the Prime Minister stated that extreme rhetoric and incitement to anti-India violence by certain leaders in the region was not conducive to peace. He highlighted the importance of creating an environment free from terror and violence and eschewing cross-border terrorism without exception,” the readout from the Prime Minister’s office said, adding that Modi “reiterated India’s commitment to cooperate with anyone who followed this path, in fighting poverty, illiteracy and disease.” @narendramodi @POTUS In the context of the regional situation, PM @narendramodi stated that extreme rhetoric and in… https://t.co/JmmDD8oPLv— PMO India (@PMOIndia) 1566225453000The White House had not commented on the phone call at the time of writing, and Trump did not mention it in his twitterfeed where he railed, as usual, about domestic issues. It was not clear who initiated the call, but the conversation came even as US negotiators neared an agreement with Taliban that would pave way for an American exit from Afghanistan. Pakistan has been desperately using its so-called Afghan card to underscore its equities in both Kabul and Kashmir, implicitly threatening to be a spoiler in Afghanistan in order to force US mediation in Kashmir. The country’s ambassador to the US Asad Majeed Khan warned last week that Pakistan would be compelled to move troops from its western border with Afghanistan to its Eastern front with India because of ongoing tensions over Kashmir in an effort to draw US intervention in an issue Washington is not inclined to meddle in, except insofar as its affects its drawdown from Afghanistan. Islamabad also wants to have its Taliban proxies in power in Kabul so it can revert to using Afghanistan as a “strategic depth” against India. The Pakistani envoy’s ploy drew a sharp rebuke from his Afghan counterpart in Washington, who said linking the current situation in Kashmir with the ongoing peace efforts in Afghanistan is “reckless, unwarranted and irresponsible.” Asserting that Kashmir is “a bilateral issue” between India and Pakistan, the Afghan ambassador Roya Rahmani said her country believes Pakistan’s motive and insistence to tie Afghanistan to the Kashmir issue is a deliberate attempt to prolong the violence happening on Afghan soil. “The Islamic Republic of Afghanistan strongly questions the assertion made by Pakistan’s ambassador to the United States, Asad Majeed Khan, that the ongoing tensions in Kashmir could potentially affect Afghanistan’s peace process. Any such statements that link the evolving situation in Kashmir to the Afghan peace efforts are reckless, unwarranted and irresponsible,” Rahmani said in a statement, adding that, “It is a poor excuse used by Pakistan to justify its inaction against the Taliban and to avoid taking a decisive stance against the militant group.” Her statement came even as it was revealed that the suicide bomber who attacked a Shia-Hazara wedding in Kabul on Saturday killed 63 people, was a man named Abu Asim Al-Pakistani. While ISIS took credit for the bombing, it appeared to have got it done with a hireling from one of Pakistan’s sectarian outfits which executes the policy of intimidating minority muslims sects (such as shia hazara) so that sunni primacy can be expressed through the likes of Taliban, which is also the objective of the Pakistani military in Afghanistan, currently governed by a more broadbased multi-ethnic dispensation. Significantly, the PMO statement on the Modi-Trump call said the Indian Prime Minister recalled to the US President that today marked the one hundred years of the Independence of Afghanistan, and “reiterated India’s longstanding and unwavering commitment to work for united, secure, democratic and truly independent Afghanistan.”