India on Tuesday informed Pakistan it “cannot be in denial” on the impact of terrorism on the bilateral relations between the two countries.
“Terrorist groups based in Pakistan targeting India must not be allowed to operate with impunity,” Indian Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar told his Pakistani counterpart Aizaz Chaudhary.
The top diplomats of both the countries met for talks in New Delhi after a hiatus of several months following a militant attack on an Indian air base.
Chaudhry, who is leading Pakistan’s delegation to the Heart of Asia meeting — Istanbul Process, met Jaishankar, in what was termed “useful and wide-ranging exchange of views.
“All outstanding issues, including the Jammu and Kashmir dispute came under discussion,” according to the Foreign Office.
The foreign secretary emphasised Kashmir remains the core issue that requires just solution under United Nations Security Council resolutions and wishes of the Kashmiri people.
Meanwhile, Jaishankar emphasised the need for early and visible progress on Pathankot assault probe as well as Mumbai attack trial in Pakistan, a press release issued by India’s ministry of external affairs said.
The Indian diplomat also pressed for a consular access to Kulbhushan Yadav, an Indian spy in custody of law enforcement agencies in Pakistan.
Discussions also covered humanitarian issues, including those pertaining to fishermen and prisoners, and people to people contacts.
The two foreign secretaries also exchanged ideas on taking the relationship forward and agreed to remain in touch.
“The meeting between Pakistan and Indian foreign secretaries provided a useful opportunity to exchange views on recent developments in bilateral context,” the Indian media quoted Pakistan High Commissioner Abdul Basit as saying. Basit also attended the meeting.
Earlier, Pakistan hosted the fifth Heart of Asia Ministerial Conference in Islamabad on December 9, 2015.
Both the diplomats were to meet in January but a terrorist attack on the Pathankot airbase led to the cancellation of the key talks.
India apparently linked the resumption of dialogue with the ongoing investigation Pakistan is currently undertaking in connection with the airbase attack.
Pakistan investigators last month visited the scene of the Pathankot attack close to the border in northern Punjab state, as part of its own probe.