The adviser to the prime minister on national security and foreign affairs, Sartaj Aziz, held a meeting with Indian External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid on Tuesday on the sidelines of the Asia-Europe Foreign Ministers’ Meeting (ASEM) in New Delhi.
The two diplomats discussed matters relating to security and terrorism as well as recent tensions along the Line of Control (LoC). Both officials agreed that their respective governments needed to respect the LoC ceasefire agreement set in place some years ago.
During the meeting, Aziz told his Indian counterpart that Pakistan wants to pursue the path of peace with India and that the stalled process of talks should be revived at the earliest possible juncture.
The meeting, according to the foreign office, was held in a cordial atmosphere where both sides reviewed bilateral relations in a constructive and forward looking manner.”
Aziz, who is currently on a three-day official visit in New Delhi, also met with leaders of the Hurriyat Conference.
Commenting on the meeting, Indian foreign ministry spokesperson Syed Akbaruddin said, both officials agreed to push for a meeting of their Directors General of Military Operations (DGMOs) at an early date.
However, responding to a question before the bilateral meeting, Khurshid said that India had done whatever it could to help bring Pakistan to the dialogue table but that certain recent actions by Pakistan had “been counterproductive”.
The Indian external affairs minister dwelt at some length on answering this question and said that Delhi wanted Islamabad to follow its intentions with corresponding actions and that this was essential for the dialogue and peace process to move forward. His meeting with the Pakistani foreign affairs adviser followed right after this press conference.
Published in The Express Tribune, November 13th, 2013.