No talks with India without Kashmir: Pak official

Written by | January 13, 2015 | 0

Islamabad: Even as the USA advised both Islamabad and New Delhi to try and put the dialogue process back on track, Pakistan today made it clear that it is not going to have any dialogue with India if Kashmir issue was not part of the agenda.

This was said by National Security Advisor (NSA) Sartaj Aziz during a joint press conference with the US Secretary of State John Kerry here today after talks which were part of the bilateral Strategic Dialogue.

It was it in this press conference that Kerry asked Pakistan to act tough on the terror organisations like Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) and Haqqani, describing them a threat to the whole world including its neighbour (read India). The US leader also asked Pakistani official to ensure that the terror havens do not exist on its soil. He further advised Pakistan to resume the peace dialogue with India.

Immediately after this, Aziz used a question on possibility of India-Pakistan talks to resort to Kashmir rant, saying that it should necessarily be in the agenda for India and Pakistan to sit together to talk. Without this, there can’t be talks between both the nations, he added.

Aziz said that the cancellation of last year’s scheduled talks over meeting with Kashmiri leaders shows that India was not interested to talk on this issue.”Pakistan will not start talks with India without Kashmir,” he said. He, however, continues to keep mum over why Pakistani High Commissioner went to the extent of talking to the separatist leaders of Kashmir defying India’s clear instructions not to do so. He also steered clear of the issue of ceasefire violations and slow trial in Mumbai terror attack case.

Kerry said US would continue to encourage the two sides to move forward and hold dialogue to resolve the issue.

He also voiced concern over the border tension between the two neighbours.

“We continue to be deeply concerned by the recent spate of increased violence along the working boundary and the Line of Control,” Kerry said.

“It is profoundly in the interests of Pakistan and India to move this relationship forward,” he added.

Aziz claimed that India was involved in unprovoked firing across the border.

The two sides in the dialogue also discussed the relations between Pakistan and India.

India had called off Foreign Secretary-level talks with Pakistan in August last year after Pakistan High Commissioner in New Delhi Abdul Basit held talks with Kashmiri separatists. And this was done despite India asking Pakistan not to go ahead with these meetings.

(With PTI inputs)

Filed in: Islamic World

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