India responds to Pakistan's offer for talks, says will discuss only cross-border terror
The Centre on Thursday said that it is ready for a bilateral engagement with Pakistan provided it focuses on cross-border terrorism and issues concerning PoK.
New Delhi: Responding to Islamabad's latest invitation for talks, the Centre on Thursday said that it is ready for a bilateral engagement with the neighbouring country provided it focuses on cross-border terrorism.
According to PTI, Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar has written a letter to his Pakistani counterpart, calling for talks on cross-border terrorism, describing it as a threat to “regional security”.
The letter was delivered to Pakistan’s Foreign Secretary Aizaz Ahmad Chaudhry late on Wednesday.
In his letter, Jaishankar also proposed a dialogue on the status of Pakistan-occupied Kashmir.
The response came days after Pakistan had written to India, calling for a dialogue on the situation in Jammu and Kashmir, and humanitarian issues related to the violence there.
The letter, sources said, was approved by National Security Advisor Ajit Doval, after deliberations which involved the heads of the intelligence services and the Ministry of Home Affairs.
Through Jaishankar's letter, New Delhi has reiterated its earlier stand - August 19 response to Pakistan’s letter - stating its willingness to engage in Foreign Secretary-level talks, but not on issues chosen by Pakistan.
Pakistan had responded to the August 19 letter the same day, drawing the Indian response delivered Wednesday.
Behind the letter, government sources say, is a foreign policy team that has pulled together to shape a strategic response to combat multiple crisis that have threatened to leave India isolated from several of its neighbours.