Pakistan foreign minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi on Friday said India has "priorities other than dialogue" and alleged that there is a group in New Delhi that does not want talks to happen, after New Delhi called off a meeting between him and external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj in NY, according to a media report.
India and Pakistan will hold a meeting of their foreign ministers on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly this month, the external affairs ministry said, indicating that New Delhi is open to improving ties under a new leadership in Islamabad.
On Thursday, the MEA spokesman had confirmed that Qureshi and Swaraj will meet on the sidelines of the UNGA in NY later this month.
Nauert also welcomed the exchange of messages between Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan and Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
The annual SAARC meeting on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly session is slated for September 27. "I must differentiate between meeting and a dialogue", said the Indian official. Now we have agreed to do the meeting (between foreign ministers).
Meanwhile, in yet another dastardly act Pakistani troops have slit the throat of a BSF jawan head constable Narendra Kumar along the global border near Jammu.
"I can say this barbaric incident, which not only defies logic, defies civilized behaviour but also violates all worldwide norms", he stated.
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He tells them: 'You guys have spent way more time in Buckingham Palace than I ever have - and you've only been here two weeks. That being said, he went on a hunting trip in Germany earlier that same month, reportedly killing 15 wild boars .
To a question pointing out to the incongruity of holding talks when ministers have made belligerent statements, Kumar said that he could not comment on the remarks made by the defence minister. "Till then, what will be discussed in the meeting, we will have to wait till the meeting takes place", External Affairs Ministry (MEA) spokesperson Raveesh Kumar told the weekly media briefing here, annoucning the first such high-level interaction between the neighbours after three years.
"It is a serious issue and we will take it up Pakistan".
When Sidhu met with Swaraj, he was allegedly reprimanded for "messing up" the matter, as per sources closed to the minister.
Kumar confirmed that Akali leader and minister for food processing Harsimrat Kaur Badal wrote to Swaraj on this issue.
"It is laughable to talk of government's Pakistan policy. Other countries have also felt that it is diffuclt to attend the SAARC summit which is to be hosted by Pakistan", he said.
Now with the change of guard in Islamabad, and the Pakistani government and military clearly on the same page, it seems New Delhi is beginning to understand just why Islamabad believes real, quantifiable progress is within reach.