Friendship with Pakistan inevitable: SM Krishna

Indian foreign minister says even global conditions require that the two countries maintain good bilateral relations.

Web Desk July 26, 2012

Ahead of his three-day visit to Pakistan for secretary-level talks, Indian Foreign Minister SM Krishna said that friendship between the two countries has become inevitable, especially after they have reconciled over several sensitive issues, reported Express News on Thursday.

Inaugurating a passport office in Sri Nagar, Krishna said that the "acrimonial debate" and "slanging match" between Pakistan and India will not help either country and that even global conditions require that both the countries maintain good bilateral relations. He, however, pointed out that convincing the opposition on such issues is also an uphill task.

Appreciating his Pakistani counterpart Hina Rabbani Khar's efforts, Krishna said that the foreign minister, in her last visit, had conveyed the message that Pakistan wants to move ahead with the bilateral relationship.

Krishna added that Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, on being invited by President Asif Ali Zardari, might visit Pakistan any time soon.

According to a report by Indian news agency PTI, Krishna also assured the chief minister of Jammu and Kashmir that he will take up the issue of cross-LoC trade including removal of negative list during his visit.

Omar Abdullah also drew the External Affairs minister's attention towards the direct impact of Indo-Pak ties on the disputed state. He added that monetary value mismatch had proved to be a complication in cross-LoC trade and requested that a more rudimentary barter format of trade be explored.

Correction: An earlier version of the story mentioned Omar Abdullah as Chief Minister of Azad Jammu and Kashmir. This is incorrect, the error is regretted.

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