Talks conveyed ’seriousness of purpose’: Pakistan foreign minister

November 11th, 2011 - 3:25 pm ICT by IANS  

Manmohan Singh Addu (Maldives), Nov 11 (IANS) Talks between the prime ministers of India and Pakistan has imparted a “seriousness of purpose” to bilateral ties, with both sides deciding to carry the dialogue in a result-oriented manner and finalising a calender of meetings, Pakistan’s Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar said Friday.

“Pakistan has positively evaluated the talks and welcomed India’s readiness for a broad- ranging engagement,” Khar said in a statement, a day after Manmohan Singh met his Pakistani counterpart Yosuf Raza Gilani on the margins of the SAARC summit at this balmy Maldivian resort.

The talks have “contributed to impel a seriousness of purpose to the process of engagement, with both sides reaffirming their commitment to the pursuit of peace and discussing all outstanding issues, including Jammu and Kashmir, in a result-oriented manner”.

India and Pakistan had agreed during the talks to finalise a calendar of meetings, Khar, who is here with Gilani, said. They further agreed to convene meetings of technical working groups prior to the holding of a meeting of the Pakistan-India Joint Commission, she added.

Khar, who participated in the India-Pakistan delegation-level talks Thursday, said both leaders “had noted that terrorism was a common problem” and echoed what Manmohan Singh told Gilani in their summit meeting about putting past acrimony behind.

“Instead of remaining mired in accusations and counter-accusations, the real way forward was cooperation,” she said.

Interior and home secretaries of the two countries had been mandated to discuss counter-terrorism and counter-narcotics, she said.

The two leaders had vowed to open a “new chapter” in ties and hoped the next round of talks will be “more productive and constructive.” Islamabad also assured New Delhi that the terrorists behind the Mumbai carnage will be brought to justice soon.

(Manish Chand can be contacted at manish.c@ians.in)

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