News / Asia

    India Cancels Talks With Pakistan

    Indian policemen secure the area outside the Pakistan High Commission as Kashmiri separatist leaders arrive for talks with the Pakistani high commissioner in New Delhi, India, Aug. 19, 2014.
    Indian policemen secure the area outside the Pakistan High Commission as Kashmiri separatist leaders arrive for talks with the Pakistani high commissioner in New Delhi, India, Aug. 19, 2014.
    Anjana Pasricha

    India on Monday called off next week’s talks between India and Pakistan’s foreign secretaries after Pakistan High Commissioner Abdul Basit met with a Kashmiri separatist leader in New Delhi.

    Indian officials had advised against the meeting, saying it would jeopardize the upcoming talks.

    Basit was to meet more Kashmiri separatist leaders on Tuesday, deepening anger in New Delhi.

    As the meeting took place, activists staged noisy protests outside the Pakistan High Commission.

    Dozens of protesters were detained by Indian police as they chanted anti-Pakistan slogans outside the Pakistan High Commission. They were demanding the High Commissioner be sent home for holding talks with Kashmiri separatists.
     
    Hardline separatist leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani was among those who met Ambassador Basit on Tuesday.
     
    Sending a message

    Previous Indian governments had also objected to the interactions between Pakistani diplomats and Kashmiri separatists, but tolerated them.

    However, Neelam Deo, a  former diplomat and director at think tank Gateway House in Mumbai, said Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government has sent a clear message that Pakistan will have to choose between talking to the Indian government or to the separatists.
     
    “That’s a very unfriendly thing they [Pakistan] have been doing always and that is part of why the relationship does not move forward,” Deo said. “New Delhi made its position clear to the Pakistanis. The Pakistanis chose to be provocative after they had already been advised by New Delhi what it would do in the circumstances. Then what could have been the content and the tone of the talks?”
     
    Pakistan expressed surprise at India’s strong objections to its consultations with Kashmiri separatists, saying this has been the usual practice before any dialogue between New Delhi and Islamabad.
     
    The blow to peace prospects comes three months after Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif attended Modi’s inauguration, raising hopes of improving ties between the South Asian rivals.
     
    Next week’s talks were meant to discuss the way forward between the two countries, whose peace dialogue was stalled by the 2008 terror attacks in Mumbai.

    Kashmir issue

    South Asia expert S.D. Muni at the Institute of Defense Studies and Analyses in New Delhi, said picking up the talks again will be contingent on Pakistan not putting the sensitive issue of Kashmir at the forefront.

    But he said this may be difficult at a time when Sharif is under intense pressure from domestic rivals.
     
    “I would still see it as a bump, not a serious jeopardy, but much of that bump would depend upon whether Pakistan will still continue to cross the kind of red lines which are very sensitive and this Hindu dominated government would not be internally able to sustain,” Muni said.
     
    Analysts such as Deo are optimistic that the rivals will keep open other channels of communication.
     
    “I think that there will be some continuation of progress in the talks that are underway on trade issues, hopefully on the supply of electricity by India to Pakistan. If those things continue to move, then that is actually more important than the noise of the relationship,” Deo said.
     
    The decision to scrap the dialogue comes at a time when India has also accused Pakistan of a series of cease-fire violations in Kashmir in recent days.

    Indian Defense Minister Arun Jaitley called the violations “deliberate.”
     
    Kashmir is divided between the two countries and has been the trigger for two of their three wars.

    Some information for this report provided by Reuters.

    You May Like

    Video Democrats Clinton, Kaine Offer 'Very Different Vision' Than Trump

    Party's presumptive presidential nominee, her vice presidential pick deliver optimistic message in Florida as they campaign for first time together

    Turkey Wants Pakistan to Close Down institutions, Businesses Linked to Gulen

    Thousands of Pakistani students are enrolled in Gulen's commercial network of around two dozen institutions operating in Pakistan for over two decades

    AU Passport A Work in Progress

    Who will get the passport and what the benefits are still need to be worked out

    This forum has been closed.
    Comments
         
    There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    In State of Emergency, Turkey’s Erdogan Focuses on Spiritual Movementi
    X
    July 22, 2016 11:49 AM
    The state of emergency that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has declared is giving him even more power to expand a purge that has seen an estimated 60,000 people either arrested or suspended from their jobs. VOA Europe correspondent Luis Ramirez reports from Istanbul.
    Video

    Video In State of Emergency, Turkey’s Erdogan Focuses on Spiritual Movement

    The state of emergency that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has declared is giving him even more power to expand a purge that has seen an estimated 60,000 people either arrested or suspended from their jobs. VOA Europe correspondent Luis Ramirez reports from Istanbul.
    Video

    Video Scientists in Poland Race to Save Honeybees

    Honeybees are in danger worldwide. Causes of what's known as colony collapse disorder range from pesticides and loss of habitat to infections. But scientists in Poland say they are on track to finding a cure for one of the diseases. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Wall Already Runs Along Parts of US-Mexico Border

    The Republican Party’s presidential nominee, Donald Trump, gained the support of many voters by saying he would build a wall to keep undocumented immigrants and drugs from coming across the border from Mexico. Critics have called his idea impractical and offensive to Mexico, while supporters say such a bold approach is needed to control the border. VOA’s Greg Flakus has more from the border town of Nogales, Arizona.
    Video

    Video New HIV Tests Emphasize Rapid Results

    As the global fight against AIDS intensifies, activists have placed increasing importance on getting people to know their HIV status. Some companies are developing new HIV testing methods designed to be quick, easy and accurate. Thuso Khumalo looks at the latest methods, presented at the International AIDS conference in Durban, South Africa.
    Video

    Video African Youth with HIV Urge More Support

    HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, is the top killer of teens in sub-Saharan Africa. But many youths say their experience with the virus is unique and needs to be addressed differently than the adult epidemic. VOA South African Correspondent Anita Powell reports.
    Video

    Video Poor Residents in Cleveland Not Feeling High Hopes of Republican Convention

    With the Republican Party's National Convention underway in Cleveland, Ohio, delegates and visitors are gathered in the host city's downtown - waiting to hear from the party's presidential candidate, Donald Trump. But a few kilometers from the convention's venue, Cleveland's poorest residents are not convinced Trump or his policies will make a difference in their lives. VOA's Ramon Taylor spoke with some of these residents as well as some of the Republican delegates and filed this report.
    Video

    Video Pop-Up Art Comes to Your Living Room, Backyard and Elsewhere

    Around the world, independent artists and musicians wrestle with a common problem: where to exhibit or perform? Traditional spaces such as museums and galleries are reserved for bigger names, and renting a space is not feasible for many. Enter ArtsUp, which connects artists with venue owners. Whether it’s a living room, restaurant, office or even a boat, pop-up events are bringing music and art to unexpected places. Tina Trinh has more.
    Video

    Video With Yosemite as Backdrop, Obama Praises National Parks

    Last month, President Barack Obama and his family visited some of the most beautiful national parks in the U.S. Using the majestic backdrop of a towering waterfall in California's Yosemite National Park, Obama praised the national park system which celebrates its 100th anniversary this year. He talked about the importance of America’s “national treasures” and the need to protect them from climate change and other threats. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
    Video

    Video Counter-Islamic State Coalition Plots Next Steps

    As momentum shifts against Islamic State in Iraq, discussions are taking place about the next steps for driving the terrorist group from its final strongholds. Secretary of State John Kerry is hosting a counter-IS meeting at the State Department, a day after defense ministers from more than 30 countries reviewed and agreed upon a course of action. VOA Pentagon correspondent Carla Babb reports.
    Video

    Video Russia's Participation at Brazil Olympic Games Still In Question

    The International Olympic Committee has delayed a decision on whether to ban all Russian teams from competing in next month's Olympic Games in Brazil over allegations of an elaborate doping scheme. The World Anti-Doping Agency recently released an independent report alleging widespread doping by Russian athletes at the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi. So far, only Russian track and field athletes have been barred from the Summer Games in Brazil. VOA's Zlatica Hoke has more.
    Video

    Video Scotland’s Booming Whisky Industry Fears Brexit Hangover

    After Britain’s vote to leave the European Union, Scotland’s government wants to break away from the United Kingdom – fearing the nation’s exports are at risk. Among the biggest of these is whisky. Henry Ridgwell reports on a time of turmoil for those involved in the ancient art of distilling Scotland’s most famous product.
    Video

    Video Millennials Could Determine Who Wins Race to White House

    With only four months to go until Americans elect a new president, one group of voters is getting a lot more attention these days: those ages 18 to 35, a generation known as millennials. It’s a demographic that some analysts say could have the power to decide the 2016 election. But a lot depends on whether they actually turn out to vote. VOA’s Alexa Lamanna reports.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora