Pakistan ready to hold talks if India revisits Aug 5, 2019 decision in Kashmir: Pakistan

ISLAMABAD: Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi on Sunday said Pakistan would be happy to talk out differences and resolve outstanding issues through dialogue if India was willing to revisit the unilateral decisions it took on Aug 5, 2019 in Kashmir, Dawn reported.

“If India is willing to re-visit some of the decisions that it took on August 5, 2019, Pakistan will be more than happy to engage, sit and talk and resolve all outstanding issues,” the foreign minister said in an interview with Anadolu Agency of Turkey during his two-day visit there.

He said Pakistan had outstanding issues with India including Kashmir, Siachen, Sir Creek, water and other minor issues and the only sensible way forward was the dialogue.

“We cannot afford to go to war, you know, it will be mutually suicidal. And no sensible person will advocate a policy of that nature. So, we need to sit and we need to talk,” he remarked.

He pointed out that it was India, not Pakistan, which ran away from talks and suspended the composite and comprehensive dialogue.

He said that Indian government’s unilateral actions of August 5, 2019, were against international law and United Nations Security Council resolutions.

However, he said, one recent development of recommitment to ceasefire during the conversation between directors general of Military Operations of both sides was a positive development.

“So, when they (Indian leaders) expressed an interest in recommitment, we welcomed it. Kashmiris have welcomed it. And that has, in my view, lowered tensions and has gone well on both sides. Sensible elements on this side and on that side have welcomed this new development,” Mr Qureshi said.

The foreign minister also referred to Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s messages on Pakistan’s national day and a goodwill message to Prime Minister Imran Khan who also responded positively to it.

“So, there is some thought. It is too early to make a value judgment on that,” he remarked. (Dawn)

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