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India and Pakistan Leaders Meet, Watch Cricket

  • Patricia Nunan

Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf have met in New Delhi, after watching their national teams battle each other in cricket. Officials say the so-called "cricket diplomacy" meeting was warm, and focused on improving cultural and economic ties as a means of bridging their dispute over the region of Kashmir.

As their cricket teams played on the pitch, Prime Minister Singh and President Musharraf met for two hours, agreeing to strengthen cultural and economic cooperation as another step to ease tension over divided Kashmir.

Going into the talks, both men signaled a renewed willingness to negotiate.

"We must find practical ways and means to resolve all outstanding issues between us," said Prime Minister Singh.

That may translate into increased transportation links across the disputed border in Kashmir, like the bus link the two nations inaugurated this month to reunite divided families.

India and Pakistan, which are nuclear rivals, have fought two wars over Kashmir.