US says meeting of Indo-Pak foreign secretaries encouraging

Published March 7, 2015
US State Department spokesperson Marie Harf. — AFP/File
US State Department spokesperson Marie Harf. — AFP/File

WASHINGTON: The United States says it welcomed the meeting between the foreign secretaries of India and Pakistan and the decision to resume dialogue was encouraging, given the tension in Kashmir region during the past six months.

Addressing a news conference, State Department spokesperson Marie Harf said that the United States "believes that both India and Pakistan stand to benefit from practical cooperation and an improved relationship".

Harf said improved ties between the two countries "would be good for regional peace and stability in South Asia".

The statement comes days after Indian Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar had made an official two-day visit to Islamabad, during which he held separate meetings with his Pakistani counterpart and Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif.

Read: Samjhota Express, LoC violations discussed: Aizaz Chaudhry

The visit was part of Jaishankar's tour of Saarc countries that India has dubbed as the (Saarc yatra).

During the foreign secretary-level meeting, India mentioned Mumbai, Pakistan referred to the Samjhota Express, Pakistan mentioned alleged Indian involvement in Balochistan and Fata and India pointed to alleged Pakistan-based anti-India militancy. Both sides brought up violence along the LoC and Working Boundary.

Also read: More of the same

The arrival of the Indian foreign secretary was viewed as the first tentative step towards reviving the stalled Indo-Pak peace talks by pledging to work together to find common ground, but it remained unclear when the dialogue would reconvene.

Dialogue has remained suspended because of continuing ceasefire violations along the Line of Control and Working Boundary, which witnessed the worst skirmishes in the past two years since the 2003 truce.

Also read: India calls off foreign secretary level talks with Pakistan

India had also cancelled planned foreign secretary talks in August last year following Pakistani High Commissioner to New Delhi Abdul Basit's meeting with the Kashmiri leadership.

Opinion

Lull before the storm
Updated 24 Oct 2021

Lull before the storm

It does not take rocket science to figure out why each of the two sides is taking the stand it is.
The larger debate
Updated 23 Oct 2021

The larger debate

The revelations show how the economy promotes inequality.

Editorial

Anti-government rallies
Updated 24 Oct 2021

Anti-government rallies

Banning a party because it can create a public nuisance sets a dangerous precedent which can be repeated to justify future bans.
24 Oct 2021

End of polio?

AFTER a long struggle, the reward is finally in sight. With only a single case of wild poliovirus reported this year...
24 Oct 2021

Heritage work

IT is encouraging that, slowly, projects of heritage conservation and preservation appear to be taking off. These...
A final push
Updated 23 Oct 2021

A final push

PAKISTAN’S hopes of exiting the so-called FATF grey list have been shattered once again. The global money...
23 Oct 2021

Kabul visit

FOREIGN MINISTER Shah Mahmood Qureshi’s flying visit to Kabul on Thursday is the first official high-level...
23 Oct 2021

Baqir’s blooper

THE remarks made by State Bank governor Reza Baqir at a London press conference have hit a raw nerve in Pakistan. In...