April 19, 2016 10:29:50 pm
Pakistan was “cooperating closely” with India on the investigations in a terror attack case on a key air force base in Pathankot earlier this year, the country’s top diplomat has said.
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s adviser on foreign affairs Sartaj Aziz said that Pakistan had sent a team to India which visited both New Delhi and the site of attack in Pathankot.
Pakistan is “cooperating closely” with India on the investigations, he said.
“We are now pursuing those investigations fully,” he said while speaking at Chatham House here last evening on ‘A Strategic Vision of Pakistan’s Foreign Policy’.
“Our relations with India continue to challenge our dream of a peaceful neighbourhood. Following the visit of the Indian external affairs minister in December last year, we agreed in principle to bilateral dialogue – which was previously called composite and now it is called comprehensive dialogue. But then the Pathankot attack happened in January,” he said.
India and Pakistan had deferred their foreign secretary-level talks to “very near future” after the Pathankot attack.
Aziz said the Kashmir issue remains a core issue for Pakistan, without which no dialogue can start with India.
“For us, Kashmir issue remains a core issue, without which no dialogue can start. In the last few years, many different options have been explored in terms of finding a solution acceptable not just to India and Pakistan but also the Kashmiri people. My own feeling is that once the dialogue begins and all options are put on the table, you can always find some common ground,” he told the audience.
In response to a question, Aziz made a reference to the alleged activities of RAW in Pakistan.
“We have arrested an Indian intelligence operative in Balochistan who was trying to encourage insurgency there. But we still want to resume our composite and comprehensive dialogue, and terrorism is one part of that composite dialogue,” he said, referring to the arrest of Kulbhushan Jhadav, who was reportedly detained in Balochistan.
Jhadav has been accused by Pakistan of planning “subversive activities” in the country.
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