Dialogue process with India to continue: Khar
* FM says Pakistan has always respected LoC ceasefire
* High military officials of two countries discussed LoC clashes
* Irresponsible statements can disturb Pak-India relations
ISLAMABAD: Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar on Thursday said that Pakistan is serious in dialogue process with India and hoped that recent incident of firing across the Line of Control (LoC) in Kashmir will not derail the dialogue process between the two countries.
Addressing a press conference at the Foreign Office after holding a meeting with her Thai counterpart Surapong Tovichakachaikul, the foreign minister said Pakistan wanted to normalise its relations with India. She said Islamabad has already responded to the LoC incident and rejected India’s claim that the Pakistan Army was responsible for the killing of two Indian Army soldiers on the Indian side of the LoC.
Pakistan has contacted the United Nations through the United Nations Military Observers Group for India and Pakistan, present across the LoC, to investigate the matter, she said. Khar said Pakistan had always respected the ceasefire that is in force since 2003. “We want to respect the ceasefire of 2003; it is absolutely unacceptable for such allegations to be made.” The foreign minister said Pakistan did not want to respond to every statement being published in the Indian media, adding that Pakistan has responded officially to this incident and emphasised the need that available mechanism should be adopted to resolve the issue.
She said the Director General Military Operations of two countries had discussed the issue and Pakistan has also contacted the UNMOGIP to investigate it. Replying to a question, the foreign minister said, “Both the countries have a mechanism to deal such issues, and as responsible states, we have to adopt this mechanism.” Appreciating the positive role of the Pakistani media and hostile attitude of Indian media, she said irresponsible statements could create disturbance in the Pak-India relations.
The foreign minister said contradictory statements were coming from India on their claim about killing of two soldiers in the Indian-occupied Kashmir. “We made responsible statement and hope that Indian government will also adopt similar responsible attitude on this issue.” Replying to a question about delay in granting Most Favoured Nation status to India, the foreign minister said Pakistan is committed to normalising its relations in all spectrum of relations, including trade.
She said normalising trade relations with India is under process and said that there could be a delay of few weeks in taking final decision in this regard. She, however, said there should be no visible or invisible barriers in smooth trading between the two countries. The foreign minister said there has been progress in normalising trade relations with India and introduction of liberal visa regime between the two countries. app