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Khurshid to Aziz: Sensitivity first, talks later

November 12, 2013 18:50 IST

Disapproving of Pakistan Prime Minister's Foreign Affairs Advisor's meeting with Hurriyat leaders, India on Tuesday said for meaningful dialogue for sustainable peace it is necessary that its "sentiments and sensitivities" are respected and termed the recent ceasefire violations by Pakistani army along LoC as "counterproductive".

External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid, who held a bilateral meeting with the Pakistan Prime Minister's Advisor of Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz on the sidelines ASEM ministerial meet, said there have been events in the recent times that are not seen by the government or by anybody in India as encouraging events, in an apparent reference to ceasefire violations along the LoC in which many Indian soldiers have been killed.

"I think they are counter-productive and I could not imagine if there is a seriousness in desire to reach some kind of situation in which a dialogue meaningfully to take place, whatever be the end result of that dialogue.....

"For a meaningful dialogue to take place (between India and Pakistan), conducive circumstances have to be created and it have to be done by both sides, it can not be only on one side. Some of these events have been somewhat counterproductive, unfortunately," Khurshid told media persons.

Asked about Aziz's meeting with Hurriyat and other separatist leaders immediately after arriving for the 11th ASEM Foreign Ministers meeting, Khurshid said, "I must say it is important that what we say and what we do, we have to carefully watch.

"It's not that I want to give any gratuitous advice to our very senior colleagues across the border, but if there is seriousness in wanting to communicate and have a meaningful dialogue with India for sustainable peace, it will be necessary to respect India's point of view, India's sentiments and sensitivities of our country.

"Because this is not a dialogue that happens in isolation, this is a dialogue that is contextual and this is a dialogue that needs public support.

"And we think that we have done a great deal to help Pakistan government to get the public support that it needs to be able to have a fair and transparent dialogue with India."

Sparking off a controversy, Aziz had met leaders of various Kashmiri separatist groups of Hurriyat Conference on Sunday immediately after his arrival for ASEM ministerial meeting. It was seen by the government as "extremely unfortunate" misuse of a multilateral forum for partisan ends.  

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