White House, U.N. Secretary General condemn Pulwama terror attack

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State Department, White House politicians also condemn attack that killed over 35 CRPF personnel when an explosive-laden SUV, driven by a suicide bomber, rammed into a CRPF convoy of about 70 vehicles in Jammu and Kashmir

The United States has condemned, “in the strongest terms” the terrorist attack on the Indian Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) convoy in Pulwama district of Jammu and Kashmir.

“The United States condemns in the strongest terms the heinous terrorist attack by a Pakistan-based terrorist group that killed over 40 Indian paramilitary forces and wounded at least 44 others. We express our deep condolences to the victims’ families, the Indian government, and the Indian people for the loss of life in this brutal attack,” a statement from the White House Press Secretary said on Thursday evening.

“The United States calls on Pakistan to end immediately the support and safe haven provided to all terrorist groups operating on its soil, whose only goal is to sow chaos, violence, and terror in the region. This attack only strengthens our resolve to bolster counter-terrorism cooperation and coordination between the United States and India,” the statement said.

The State Department had, earlier in the day, also reacted via a separate statement.

“The UN designated, Pakistan-based terrorist group Jaish-e-Muhammad has claimed responsibility for this heinous act. We call on all countries to uphold their responsibilities pursuant to UN Security Council resolutions to deny safe haven and support for terrorists,” the statement said.

The U.N Secretary General’s office has also strongly condemned the attack. ”We call for those behind the attack to be brought to justice,” a UN Spokesperson for Secretary General António Guterres said.

Several U.S. lawmakers condemned the attack on Thursday afternoon that killed at least 37 CRPF personnel when an explosive-laden SUV, driven by a suicide bomber, rammed into a CRPF convoy of about 70 vehicles. Pakistan-based terrorist group Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) took responsibility for the attack and released a photo identifying the suicide bomber.

“We stand with the people of India in condemning the terrorist attack in Jammu & Kashmir, and send our condolences and prayers to the victims [sic] families. We must all stand up against these jihadists and their ideology,” Democratic Congresswoman and Presidential candidate Tulsi Gabbard said.

Condemning the attack, House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Eliot Engel said, “Countries must not allow terrorist groups like Jaish-e-Mohammed to operate with impunity.”

“The United States stands strongly with India and I send my condolences to the families of the victims,” Congressman Tom Suozzi whose Congressional district in New York City (Queens) has a significant Indian population, said.

Congressman George Holding, co-chair of the Congressional Caucus for India and Indian Americans also offered his condolences. “The United States stands with the good people of India and the Indian government in our collective effort to end violent extremism and terrorism.”

Indian American Members of Congress also conveyed their condolences with Democratic Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal calling the attack “heartbreaking” and her colleague, Congressman Raja Krishnamoorthi, saying, “We must all stand united against terrorism.”

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