Tuesday, Dec 30, 2008
Pakistan on Tuesday called for negotiations with India and asked New Delhi to relocate its troops away from the border in a show of goodwill to defuse tensions between the nuclear-armed neighbours.
The proposals from Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi came as both sides took steps to rekindle relations that had quickly deteriorated following the Mumbai attacks, which India blamed on militants based in Pakistan.
“Dialogue is in the interest of both the countries — we should sit across the table and also use diplomatic channels” to resolve differences, Qureshi said in a policy statement broadcast live on local television.
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“Pakistan wants to make two specific proposals to India to reduce tensions and create a congenial atmosphere,” he said.
“India should de-activate its forward air bases and relocate its ground forces to peacetime positions,” Qureshi said. “This will send a positive signal and reduce tensions in the region.”
Qureshi described developments in the past two days — such as a hotline conversation between high-level military officials from the two countries — as “positive”.
This article was posted: Tuesday, December 30, 2008 at 5:42 am