Imran Khan chairs meeting to review ties with India


Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan on Friday convened a high-level meeting with country’s Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi and senior officials of the Foreign Office to review Pakistan’s ties with India, local media reported. Khan will take a holistic review of the current status of the relationship between the two countries after recent developments, Geo News reported citing unnamed sources.

The meeting comes a day after Pakistan’s federal cabinet back-tracked on the Pakistan Economic Coordination Committee’s (ECC) decision to allow the import of sugar, cotton and cotton yarn from India through land and sea routes. If the ECC decision was implemented, it would have led to the resumption of trade between the two countries after two years. Pakistan had unilaterally snapped ties with India in August 2019 to protest against the abrogation of Article 370 and bifurcation of the erstwhile state of Jammu and Kashmir into two union territories.

In recent weeks, Pakistan’s leadership has toned down the rhetoric against India. The Pakistan government and the military have issued statements signalling the country’s desire to normalise the ties between the two countries. Last month, Pakistan Army Chief Jawed Qamar Bajwa said ‘it is a time to bury the past and move forward’. He called for a stable relationship between India and Pakistan as it is key to unlocking the potential of South and Central Asia by ensuring connectivity between East and West Asia.

Meanwhile, Imran Khan said that India would have to take the first step for improving bilateral relations by addressing the Kashmir issue. Last month, India and Pakistan also held the annual meeting of the Permanent Indus Commission (PIC) after a gap of more than two-and-a-half years.

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A delegation from Pakistan arrived in New Delhi to hold talks with India under the 1960 Indus Water Treaty (IWT). In February, India and Pakistan had announced that they have agreed to a ceasefire along the Line of Control (LoC).



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