Jaipur: In the backdrop of delay in Foreign Secretary-level talks with India, Pakistan has said that dialogue was not a favour by one country to another but a necessity to normalise relations.
“Dialogue was not a favour by one country to another but a necessity to normalise relations,” Pakistan High Commissioner to India Abdul Basit said on Saturday, adding that “Jammu and Kashmir was the root cause of all our bilateral problems, as mutually agreed we must work together to settle this issue”.
Pitching for ‘uninterruptible and uninterrupted' dialogue, Basit said, “Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif wants normalisation of relations on the basis of mutual respect and mutual interest. We are pursuing this policy with seriousness of purpose.”
He also said that Islamabad want to get to the bottom of the Pathankot terror attack which claimed lives of seven Indian jawans.
“We are not yet in a cul-de-sac, spirit of cooperation must be retained. It is necessary we avoid jumping the gun,” Basit asserted.
“Neither war nor disengagement is an option. Our globalised world calls for active cooperation to address common challenges including terrorism,” Basit further said.
He also noted that ‘road to peace is always strewn with many impediments and requires courage to take difficult decisions. Peace is in mutual interest of Pakistan and India and peace can only be achieved through uninterruptible and uninterrupted dialogue'.
Indicating that action against terror by Pakistan will take priority over talks with it in the aftermath of the Pathankot strike that had delayed the talks, India's Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar India had earlier this week said, “In the aftermath of a terror attack, if you ask me what do you give priority to, a terrorist attack or a diplomatic dialogue, I think the answer should be obvious.”
Talks between the Foreign Secretaries scheduled for the middle of January this year got derailed after the terrorist attack on the Indian Air Force base in Pathankot on January 2 that claimed the lives of seven Indian security personnel. The Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) claimed responsibility for the attack in which all the six terrorists were also reportedly killed.
India has since sent “actionable evidence” to the Pakistani authorities to bring the perpetrators of the attack to book.
With PTI Inputs