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

    South Sudan Sends First Ever Official Olympic Team to Rio

    VOA caught up with Santino Kenyi, 16, one of three athletes who will compete in this year's summer games in Brazil

    Arrest of Malawi's 'Hyena' Man Highlights Clash of Ritual, Health and Women's Rights

    Ritual practice of deflowering young girls is blamed for spreading deadly AIDS virus

    Immigrant Delegate Marvels at Democratic Process

    VOA finds things Americans take for granted are special to foreigners

    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.
    Immigrant Delegate Marvels at Democratic Processi
    X
    Katherine Gypson
    July 27, 2016 6:21 PM
    It’s been a bitter and divisive election season – but first time Indian-American delegate Dr. Shashi Gupta headed to the Democratic National Convention with a sense of hope. VOA’s Katherine Gypson followed this immigrant with the love of U.S. politics all the way to Philadelphia.
    Video

    Video Immigrant Delegate Marvels at Democratic Process

    It’s been a bitter and divisive election season – but first time Indian-American delegate Dr. Shashi Gupta headed to the Democratic National Convention with a sense of hope. VOA’s Katherine Gypson followed this immigrant with the love of U.S. politics all the way to Philadelphia.
    Video

    Video A Life of Fighting Back: Hillary Clinton Shatters Glass Ceiling

    Hillary Clinton made history Thursday, overcoming personal and political setbacks to become the first woman to win the presidential nomination of a major U.S. political party. If she wins in November, she will go from “first lady” to U.S. Senator from New York, to Secretary of State, to “Madam President.” Polls show Clinton is both beloved and despised. White House Correspondent Cindy Saine takes a look at the life of the woman both supporters and detractors agree is a fighter for the ages.
    Video

    Video Dutch Entrepreneurs Turn Rainwater Into Beer

    June has been recorded as one of the wettest months in more than a century in many parts of Europe. To a group of entrepreneurs in Amsterdam the rain came as a blessing, as they used the extra water to brew beer. Serginho Roosblad has more to the story.
    Video

    Video First Time Delegate’s First Day Frustrations

    With thousands of people filling the streets of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania for the 2016 Democratic National Convention, VOA’s Kane Farabaugh narrowed in on one delegate as she made her first trip to a national party convention. It was a day that was anything but routine for this United States military veteran.
    Video

    Video Commerce Thrives on US-Mexico Border

    At the Democratic Convention in Philadelphia this week, the party’s presumptive presidential nominee, Hillary Clinton, is expected to attack proposals made by her opponent, Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump, to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border. Last Friday, President Barack Obama hosted his Mexican counterpart, President Enrique Peña Nieto, to underscore the good relations between the two countries. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Tucson.
    Video

    Video Film Helps Save Ethiopian Children Thought to be Cursed

    'Omo Child' looks at effort of African man to stop killings of ‘mingi’ children
    Video

    Video London’s Financial Crown at Risk as Rivals Eye Brexit Opportunities

    By most measures, London rivals New York as the only true global financial center. But Britain’s vote to leave the European Union – so-called ‘Brexit’ – means the city could lose its right to sell services tariff-free across the bloc, risking its position as Europe’s financial headquarters. Already some banks have said they may shift operations to the mainland. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
    Video

    Video Recycling Lifeline for Lebanon’s Last Glassblowers

    In a small Lebanese coastal town, one family is preserving a craft that stretches back millennia. The art of glass blowing was developed by Phoenicians in the region, and the Khalifehs say they are the only ones keeping the skill alive in Lebanon. But despite teaming up with an eco-entrepreneur and receiving an unexpected boost from the country’s recent trash crisis the future remains uncertain. John Owens reports from Sarafand.
    Video

    Video Migrants Continue to Risk Lives Crossing US Border from Mexico

    In his speech Thursday before the Republican National Convention, the party’s presidential candidate, Donald Trump, reiterated his proposal to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border if elected. Polls show a large percentage of Americans support better control of the nation's southwestern border, but as VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from the border town of Nogales in the Mexican state of Sonora, the situation faced by people trying to cross the border is already daunting.
    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 Calm the Waters: US Doubles Down Diplomatic Efforts in ASEAN Meetings

    The United States is redoubling diplomatic efforts and looking to upcoming regional meetings to calm the waters after an international tribunal invalidated the legal basis of Beijing's extensive claims in the South China Sea. VOA State Department correspondent Nike Ching has the story.
    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.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora