Pakistan government on Wednesday said a decision is yet to be taken about a meeting between Nawaz Sharif and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly but stressed such an interaction will be very helpful for bilateral ties.
Pakistani diplomatic sources said they were yet to hear from the Indian side but insisted that Islamabad is very keen to have a meeting between the leaders on the sidelines of the UN session in New York later in September.
“Our stand is that this meeting would be beneficial for the ties,” a source said.
Asked about the possible meeting,Pakistan’s Foreign Office spokesman Aizaz Chaudhry said,”The two governments are in touch with each other on the matter. We will confirm the meeting after a decision has been made.”
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif will visit New York on September 23 to attend the UN General Assembly. He will deliver his address on September 27 in which he will highlight Pakistan’s point of view on regional and international issues and domestic priorities.
Sharif will inform the session about his government’s efforts to curb terrorism and its endeavours to bring stability to the region. Sources said Sharif’s vision for ties with India and the Kashmir issue will also figure in his speech.
The spokesman said Sharif will hold bilateral meetings with world leaders on the sidelines of the UN session. However,no meeting has been scheduled with US President Barack Obama.
Chaudhry said Islamabad and Washington are in touch for a meeting between Sharif and Obama in the coming months. He said such a meeting will not take place on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly due to paucity of time.
Asked about the release of Taliban detainees,Chaudhry said the Pakistan government has decided in principle to release former Afghan Taliban deputy chief Mullah Baradar at an appropriate time.
The purpose of releasing the detainees is to contribute to the Afghan reconciliation process,he said. The detainees were released at the request of the Afghan government and Pakistan will continue taking steps for the success of the reconciliation process,he added.