Pakistan wants meaningful dialogue with India: Foreign Office

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PHOTO: USAMAH MAHMOOD KHAN

The government has reiterated it wants result-oriented dialogue with India to resolve all outstanding issues, including that of Kashmir, besides promoting bilateral relations.

“We are waiting on how to move forward after the meeting between Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif with his Indian counterpart Narendra Modi in Paris,” Radio Pakistan quoted Foreign Office spokesperson Qazi Khalilullah as saying at the weekly news briefing in Islamabad on Thursday.

The spokesperson said a two-day Heart of Asia Conference will begin in Islamabad from Tuesday, which will be inaugurated by the prime minister and Afghan President Ashraf Ghani.

However, Khalilullah added, confirmation of Ghani’s visit was yet to be confirmed.

“So far foreign ministers of China, Tajikistan, Iran and Afghanistan have confirmed their participation from the participating countries,” he said.

Commenting on the agenda of the conference, the foreign office spokesperson said it was aimed at cementing regional ties besides expanding cooperation among Afghanistan and regional partners in countering terrorism and elimination of poverty and extremism.

Responding to a question about Islamic State, the spokesperson said the militant group had no footprint on Pakistani soil.

“Pakistan is committed to root out terrorism from the country, for which Operation Zarb-e-Azb is continuing.”

While Pakistan is in favour of coordinated action rather than a joint action, Khalilullah said, adding the country was also cooperating at an international level through intelligence gathering and sharing.

The spokesperson also revealed that currently 2,308 Pakistanis were serving their sentences in Saudi Arabia, adding almost the same number of countrymen involved Hajj- and Umra-related visa violations were awaiting deportation.

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