Pakistan, India agree to carry dialogue forward


THIMPHU – The foreign secretaries of India and Pakistan on Sunday affirmed the need to carry the dialogue process between the two countries forward. In a meeting in Bhutan, Foreign Secretary Salman Bashir and his Indian counterpart, Nirupama Rao also agreed on the need for a constructive bilateral dialogue to resolve all outstanding issues.
According to a press release, the meeting was held in “pursuance of the mandate given by the prime ministers of India and Pakistan, following their meeting in Thimphu in April 2010, and the meeting of the minister of external affairs of India and minister of foreign affairs of Pakistan in July, 2010.” The foreign secretaries had useful and frank discussions on steps required to be taken for further talks.
Before the meeting, Rao was quoted as saying, “Dialogue between India and Pakistan is necessary and a must if we are to satisfactorily resolve the outstanding issues between our two countries.”
“We have a number of outstanding issues. So we are going into this with an open mind and constructive attitude.” Bashir had said the talks would focus on making progress towards another meeting between the countries’ foreign ministers.
“My expectations are that we should be working towards continued engagement,” he said.