Mohali meeting a new opening to settle disputes: Islamabad

April 1st, 2011 - 1:08 pm ICT by IANS  

Yousuf Raza Gilani Islamabad, April 1 (IANS) Islamabad has said that Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani’s meeting with his Indian premier Manmohan Singh at Mohali was a new opening to settle outstanding disputes through talks, a media report stated Friday.

Gilani travelled to Mohali in India’s Punjab state on an invitation from Manmohan Singh to watch the India-Pakistan World Cup semifinal Wednesday. Their meeting at Mohali has been dubbed cricket diplomacy.

India beat Pakistan by 29 runs at Mohali and will now play Sri Lanka in the final in Mumbai Saturday.

President Asif Ali Zardari and Gilani met Thursday and they expressed satisfaction over the resumption of talks between the two neighbours, the Dawn newspaper reported.

“Regular interaction at all levels would not only provide a solid platform to resolve our mutual issues, but would also help reduce misperceptions and mistrusts,” the president’s spokesman Farhatullah Babar quoted Zardari as saying.

Gilani informed Zardari of his discussion with Manmohan Singh as well as Congress president Sonia Gandhi.

They also discussed the meeting between the interior secretaries of the two countries that was held in New Delhi March 28-29.

Gilani called the interior secretaries’ talks successful and said that many outstanding issues have been resolved, the Dawn said.

Babar quoted Gilani as saying: “The dialogue processes between Pakistan and India were always suspended in the past when issues at the interior secretary level talks remained unresolved.”

The talks came to a halt after the November 2008 terrorist attacks in Mumbai that left 166 people dead.

Zardari welcomed Gilani’s meeting with the Indian leadership and called it a positive development for the region.

“They were of the view that the Indian prime minister took a bold step by inviting Pakistani leaders to the semifinal and he could have been in an awkward situation if Prime Minister Gilani would not have flown to Mohali,” said Babar.

It is learnt that Kashmir issue did not come for discussion during Gilani-Manmohan meeting Wednesday.

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