News / Asia

Indian, Pakistani Leaders Hold Landmark Talks

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, right, shakes hand with his Pakistani counterpart Nawaz Sharif before the start of their meeting in New Delhi, India, May 27, 2014.
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, right, shakes hand with his Pakistani counterpart Nawaz Sharif before the start of their meeting in New Delhi, India, May 27, 2014.
Anjana Pasricha
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi has urged his Pakistani counterpart Nawaz Sharif to crack down on militancy during their talks in New Delhi.

The two leaders have held a landmark meeting in New Delhi, marking a thaw in their frosty ties. India has called on Pakistan to meet its commitment of cracking down on Islamic militants as the Pakistani leader expressed optimism about the prospect of peace.     
 
Sharif spoke with hope following a meeting with his Indian counterpart Modi in New Delhi Tuesday.
 
Sharif said the two countries' common agenda of development and economic revival cannot be achieved unless there is peace in the region. He said he told the Indian prime minister that “together we should rid the region of instability and insecurity.”
 
“I urged that we had to strive to change confrontation into cooperation. Engaging in accusations and counter-accusations would be counter-productive, I emphasized. My government therefore stands ready to discuss all issues between our two countries in a spirit of cooperation. After all, we owe it to our people to overcome the legacy of mistrust and misgivings,” he said.
 
The two leaders met a day after Sharif came to the Indian capital following an unexpected invitation to all South Asian leaders to attend the swearing-in ceremony of the new Indian prime minister.
 
Modi and Sharif shook hands warmly and their meeting extended well beyond the scheduled half hour.
 
  • India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Pakistani counterpart Nawaz Sharif smile before the start of their bilateral meeting in New Delhi, May 27, 2014.
  • Chief cleric Syed Ahmed Bukhari gestures as he shows Pakistan's Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif around Jama Masjid in the old quarters of New Delhi, May 27, 2014.
  • Pakistan's Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif speaks with chief cleric Syed Ahmed Bukhari during his visit to Jama Masjid in the old quarters of New Delhi, May 27, 2014.
  • Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi shakes hands with his Pakistani counterpart Nawaz Sharif, as Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa and Mauritius Prime Minister Navinchandra Ramgoolam watch during Mr. Modi’s inauguration in New Delhi, May 26, 2014.
  • Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif waves as he arrives to attend the swearing in ceremony of India’s prime minister elect Narendra Modi in New Delhi, May 26, 2014.

India says the core concern that has prevented the two countries from moving ahead is, in India's view, Pakistan’s failure to clamp down on Islamic militant groups which New Delhi blames for terror strikes in India. The worst attack took place in Mumbai in 2008, killing more than 160 people. India has complained about postponements and delays in the trial of the suspects.
 
“It was conveyed that Pakistan must abide by its commitment to prevent its territory and territory under its control for being used for terrorism against India," said Sujatha Singh, India’s foreign secretary.  "We also expect necessary steps will be taken in the Mumbai terror attack trial under way in Pakistan to ensure speedy progress of the case,” she said.
 
Modi told his counterpart that the two countries could immediately move to normalizing trade relations which have been held hostage to their political differences.
 
For the time being, the two countries appear to have broken the ice. Officials said the foreign secretaries of the two countries will be meeting soon to discuss “how to move the relationship forward."
 
Sharif sounded optimistic that the clear mandate which both leaders have could help in turning a new page in their relations.
 
Although Tuesday’s meeting was a milestone, political analysts say it is too early to say how talks between the two countries will progress. However, they say Modi’s initiative in calling the Pakistani leader, and Sharif’s decision to come to New Delhi, show that both sides are willing to break the deadlock. The two rivals, who have fought three wars, have not held official talks for nearly two years.

You May Like

Is West Doing Enough to Tackle Islamic State?

There is growing uncertainty over whether West’s response to ISIS is adequate More

China Crackdown on Dual Citizens Causes Concern

New policy encourages reporting people who obtain citizenship in another country, but retain Chinese citizenship; move spurs sharp debate More

Video Coalition to Fight Islamic State Could Reward Assad

Losing ground to Islamic State fighters, Syria's government says it is ready to cooperate with international community More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Mehtasaab from: Washington, DC
May 28, 2014 4:46 PM
India and Pakistan can be friends. They are two sons of the same mother. Because of dirty politics of British, They separated India and Pakistan. Both countries enjoy same bollywood movies, bollywood songs and same food. They also talk same language Hindi and Urdu (both sister language). I hope western world stay out of dirty politics.


by: Hafizur Rahim from: Bellerose, NYC, USA.
May 27, 2014 7:03 PM
It is of utmost importance to shed the hatred of partition of British India and look forward for peace in the region. This will help economic progress and progress in other fields. Hatred to each other consumes the energy which can be better utilized in construc-tive fields. Leaders should have that vision for the welfare of each community.


by: Anonymous
May 27, 2014 9:03 AM
I guess you can always ask the guy whose government hid bin Ladin to crack down on terror...

In Response

by: lacky from: Boise
May 27, 2014 10:57 AM
You might want to read about Sharif.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Ukraine Accuses Russia of Territorial Incursionsi
X
Zlatica Hoke
August 28, 2014 4:07 AM
Ukraine says a key border town (Novoazovsk) and surrounding areas of in southeastern Ukraine have fallen under the control of Russia's military. President Poroshenko says "Russian troops have actually been brought into Ukraine." Despite repeated denials from Moscow, Ukraine accuses the Kremlin of providing weapons and fighters to separatists in eastern Ukraine, toward the Russian leadership's alleged goal of annexing that strategic territory. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Ukraine Accuses Russia of Territorial Incursions

Ukraine says a key border town (Novoazovsk) and surrounding areas of in southeastern Ukraine have fallen under the control of Russia's military. President Poroshenko says "Russian troops have actually been brought into Ukraine." Despite repeated denials from Moscow, Ukraine accuses the Kremlin of providing weapons and fighters to separatists in eastern Ukraine, toward the Russian leadership's alleged goal of annexing that strategic territory. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Made in America Socks Get Toehold in Online Fashion Market

Three young entrepreneurs are hoping to revolutionize the high-end sock industry by introducing all-American creations of their own. And they’re doing most of it the old-fashioned way. VOA’s Julie Taboh recently caught up with them to learn what goes into making their one-of-a-kind socks.
Video

Video Americans, Ex-Pats Send Relief Supplies to West Africa

Health organizations from around the world are sending supplies and specialists to the West African countries that are dealing with the worst Ebola outbreak in history. On a smaller scale, ordinary Americans and African expatriates living in the United States are doing the same. VOA's Carol Pearson reports.
Video

Video America's Most Popular Artworks Displayed in Public Places

Public places in cities across America were turned into open-air art galleries in August. Pictures of the nation’s most popular artworks were displayed on billboards, bus shelters, subway platforms and more. The idea behind “Art Everywhere,” a collaborative campaign by five major museums is to allow more people to enjoy art and learn about the country’s culture and history. Faiza Elmasry has more.
Video

Video Chinese Doctors Use 3-D Spinal Implant

A Chinese boy suffering from a debilitating bone disease has become the first patient with a part of his spine created in a three-dimensional printer. Doctors say he will soon regain normal mobility. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Uneasy Calm Settles Over Israel, Gaza Strip

Israel and the Gaza Strip have been calm since a cease-fire set in Tuesday evening, ending seven weeks of hostilities. Hamas, which controls Gaza, declared victory. Israelis were more wart. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from Jerusalem.
Video

Video India’s Leprosy Battle Stymied by Continuing Stigma

Medical advancements in the treatment of leprosy have greatly diminished its impact around the world, largely eliminating the disease from most countries. India made great strides in combating leprosy, but still accounts for a majority of the world’s new cases each year, and the number of newly infected Indians is rising - more than 130,000 recorded last year. Doctors there say the problem has more to do with society than science. Shaikh Azizur Rahman reports from Kolkata.
Video

Video Scientists Unlock Mystery of Bird Flocks

How can flocks of birds, schools of fish or herds of antelope suddenly change direction -- all the individuals adjusting their movement in concert, at seemingly the same time? British researchers now have some insights into this behavior, which has puzzled scientists for a long time. VOA's George Putic has more.

AppleAndroid