Accessibility links

India-Pakistan Peace Talks to Begin This Week - 2004-07-19


Foreign Ministers of India and Pakistan are set to meet this week in Islamabad to discuss a peace process to improve bilateral ties. The talks will take place on the sidelines of a meeting of the regional forum known as South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation, SAARC.

Indian Foreign Minister Natwar Singh arrived in Islamabad Monday to attend the two-day meeting of the seven-nation regional group. But attention will focus on his talks with Pakistani counterpart Khursheed Mehmood Kasuri.

The two leaders are expected to discuss a peace process aimed at resolving the territorial dispute over Kashmir and other issues straining relations between India and Pakistan.

Indian Foreign Minister Singh says he has come to Islamabad with "a message of good will" from his government. He says he also plans to meet with President Pervez Musharraf and Prime Minister Chaudhry Shujjat Hussain during his stay in Pakistan.

"I shall do whatever I can to use this opportunity to contribute further to creating an even better climate for taking forward our composite dialogue process," Mr. Singh said.

Earlier on Monday, top diplomats from India and Pakistan met in Islamabad, and discussed proposals on how to take the peace process forward and settle the dispute over Kashmir. But officials from both sides refused to give further details of the discussions.

The tensions over Kashmir have led to two wars between India and Pakistan. Intense International diplomacy averted a third conflict between the nuclear-capable nations two years ago. Since then, India and Pakistan have taken steps to reduce tensions, including resumption of a bilateral peace dialogue.

XS
SM
MD
LG