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No talks with India unless the issue of Kashmir was on the agenda: FO

11 September, 2015

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ISLAMABAD: Foreign Office spokesperson Qazi Khalilullah on Thursday reiterated that there would be no talks with India unless the issue of Kashmir was on the agenda.

“Any formal talks with New Delhi would have Kashmir as part of the agenda,” Khalilullah said during his weekly press briefing in Islamabad. At the same time, the spokesperson said Pakistan will also not accept any pre-conditions for talks. He pointed out that there are United Nations resolutions on the disputed region of Kashmir. Pakistan wants peaceful resolution of this dispute in accordance with the UN resolutions and the aspirations of Kashmiri people, Khalilullah said.

He further said there was no proposal under consideration for a meeting between national security advisers of India and Pakistan on the sidelines of UN General Assembly meeting. The 70th Regular Session of the UN General Assembly will start on September 15. The general debate of UNGA session will take place from September 28 to October 6. Khalilullah said Pak-India meeting in New York is not under consideration. To a question, the FO spokesperson rejected reports of Maj Gen Athar Abbas’ appointment as Pakistan’s high commissioner to UK. He also strongly condemned the attacks on journalists in Karachi.

Answering a question, the spokesman said Pakistan has been cooperating with Afghanistan on matters related to counter-terrorism. “We think that terrorism is our common enemy and a cooperative approach is required to deal with this menace.” Pakistan is against terrorism in all its forms and manifestations. To another question, he said that there is no footprint of Daesh in Pakistan. “However, we are cognizant of the threat it poses and have alerted our security agencies accordingly.”

The FO spokesman confirmed that in accordance with an assurance, Afghan authorities have taken measures to enhance security of Pakistan Embassy personnel and premises in Kabul. To another question, the spokesperson said that the purpose of the MoU signed between ISI and Afghan intelligence agency NDS was to have better coordination between the two agencies for dealing with security threats faced by the two countries. “However, it is for the Afghan government to decide whether it wants to proceed under the MoU or not.” The spokesperson also said that many projects are being implemented as part of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor. The government has repeatedly said that these projects would not only benefit the peoples of the two countries but also the entire region.

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