Delhi: Amid outrage in the country over death sentence awarded to Indian national Kulbhushan Jadhav, Pakistan's National Security Adviser Nasser Janjua has said that the two neighbours "cannot remain enemies forever" and they need to engage and resolve their disputes.
Janjua's remarks comes against the backdrop of spike in Indo-Pak tensions over the death sentence awarded to Jadhav by a military court and New Delhi's warning to Islamabad to consider the consequences on bilateral ties if he is hanged.
Pakistan's NSA claimed that the international community is overlooking Kashmir issue due to their own strategic interests related to India.
"Although India considers Kashmir a bilateral issue, it has defeated the spirit of bilateralism by defying any dialogue over it," Janjua said while speaking to Canadian High Commissioner Perry Calderwood on Tuesday.
"Extreme thoughts are to be mitigated through a change of perception, by winning hearts and minds and not by use of force alone," he said, referring to the situation in Kashmir, as per PTI.
"We need to engage with each other and resolve disputes," Janjua was quoted as saying by the state-run Associated Press of Pakistan (APP).
"Pakistan and India cannot remain enemies forever," he said.
Janjua and Calderwood discussed regional dynamics and bilateral ties, Pakistan's role in eradicating terrorism, counter-terrorism cooperation, the implementation of the National Action Plan (NAP) and Pakistan-India relations with reference to the US' offer for mediation.
India warns Pak:
India had yesterday warned Pakistan to consider the "consequences" on their ties if Jadhav wass hanged in the alleged espionage case and had also vowed to go "out of the way" to save him.
The death sentence awarded to Jadhav by a Pakistani military court after declaring him a "spy" had echoed in both Houses of Parliament where all parties had came together to condemn the "indefensible" verdict and had pressed the government to take every step to help him.
External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj had made a statement in both the Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha, had asserted that India would go "out of the way" to ensure justice to Jadhav who was an "innocent kidnapped Indian".
Jadhav's execution would be taken by India as a "pre-meditated murder" and Pakistan should "consider its consequences" on bilateral relations, if it proceeded on this matter, Swaraj had warned.
She had added that the charges against Jadhav, who was doing business in Iran and was kidnapped and taken to Pakistan, were "concocted" and the trial against him was "farcical", leading to an "indefensible verdict".
"Let me state clearly that the government and the people of India would view very seriously the possibility that an innocent Indian citizen is facing death sentence in Pakistan without due process and in violation of basic norms of law, justice and international relations," she had said.
Questioning the trial, she had said that Pakistan had sought India's assistance to obtain evidence for its investigation and had levelled ridiculous charges against senior Indian officials who had no connection to this issue.
Thereafter, Pakistan linked providing consular access to India's acceptance of its position and Indian response was constructive in the hope that some forward movement could be made, Swaraj had said.
"We pointed out that consular access to Shri Jadhav would be an essential pre-requisite in order to verify the facts and understand the circumstances of his presence in Pakistan. Given this exchange, it is extraordinary that yesterday, a decision is suddenly announced awarding a death sentence in this case when previous exchanges with India itself underlines the insufficiency of evidence," she had said.
(With Agency inputs)