India ‘spoiled environment at Heart of Asia conference’

Dialogue should not be just for the sake of dialogue


APP December 09, 2016
Foreign affairs adviser meets prime minister to discuss strategy for the regional meeting . PHOTO: REUTERS

ISLAMABAD: The Foreign Office on Thursday said Pakistan wants ‘result-oriented, sustainable’ dialogue with India and welcomes mediation by international community on the Kashmir issue.

“We always welcome offers of mediation by friendly countries, including the US, China and Iran, and the UN Secretary-General for the resolution of Kashmir issue,” Foreign Office Spokesman Nafees Zakaria said at a weekly press briefing.

He, however, said: “Dialogue should not be just for the sake of dialogue”, rather it should be sustainable and result-oriented.

Responding to a question on Afghan President Ashraf Ghani “speaking India’s language” at the Heart of Asia Conference in Amritsar, Zakaria quoted the response of Sartaj Aziz as saying that Pakistan would not allow its soil to be used against Afghanistan. The spokesman said: “India, at the Heart of Asia Conference, tried to spoil the environment and created an atmosphere that sent negative signals instead of focusing on cooperation.”

Meanwhile, Pakistan High Commissioner to India Abdul Basit on Thursday said India and Pakistan have ‘serious problems’ which have to be discussed. Talking to the Indian Express, he spoke on the increasing diplomatic hostilities between the two neighbouring countries. “There are serious problems between our two countries, we can’t shy away from those.” (With additional input from News Desk)

Published in The Express Tribune, December 9th, 2016.

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