Responding to Indian Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar’s statement of New Delhi ‘slowly closing’ the window of goodwill and dialogue with Islamabad, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif Adviser on Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz has said that Islamabad is not desperate to have a dialogue with the Indian Government, and it is New Delhi that has backed out of talks at the last minute, not his country.
Dawn quoted Aziz saying, “It is a very strange thing to say as it was decided here on December 9 that the dialogue will resume but then the Pathankot incident occurred and everything vanished into thin air.”
Aziz said that Pakistan is not desperate for talks with India as there is no restlessness on their side for a dialogue.
He, however, insisted that the south-east region can have peace provided there is coordination between the two nations.
Aziz also hinted at holding full-fledged discussions on all issues, including Kashmir and not just stick to ‘we (India) will talk if Pakistan makes some progress on terrorism.’
Parrikar had earlier on Saturday asserted that while Prime Minister Narendra Modi had opened a window of goodwill and dialogue with Pakistan, it was now closing as doubts remained about Islamabad’s sincerity in tackling terrorism.
Four terrorists were killed when they carried out a suicide attack on the strategic Indian Air Force base in Pathankot during the intervening night of January 1-2. Seven security personnel were also killed during the 80-hour-long gun battle.
The Pathankot air base was attacked by heavily armed terrorists during the intervening night of January 1-2reportedly having allegiance to the Jaish-e-Mohammed, a terrorist organisation based in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir, in which four terrorists and three security forces personnel were killed.