Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan. (Photo: Collected)
Prime Minister Imran Khan has said that Pakistan is ready to resume talks with India if it plans to restore the abolished article of the constitution on Kashmir’s autonomy.
“If there is a roadmap, then, yes, we will discuss,” Imran Khan told Reuters at his official residence in Islamabad on Friday.
Shortly after its independence from colonial rule in 1947, India and Pakistan became embroiled in a dispute over the state of Kashmir. Both countries have been claiming the entire Himalayan region as part of their own. But some part of it is under the control of Pakistan and some part is under the control of India.
In 2019, the government of India abolished the right of autonomy in Kashmir and imposed central government there. Pakistan reacted angrily, limiting diplomatic relations and suspending bilateral trade.
Earlier, Imran Khan’s government had demanded that India move away from its 2019 move on Kashmir before any process could begin to normalize relations between the two countries.
Referring to the revocation of Kashmir’s special status as a UN declaration and a violation of international law, Imran Khan said, “Even if they give us a roadmap that these steps will be taken to restore Kashmir’s status, it will be acceptable.”
Reuters could not immediately be reached for comment.
Citing the example of the European Union, Imran Khan said he was always keen to maintain a ‘civilized’ and ‘open’ relationship with India.
“If you want to alleviate poverty in South Asia, the best way is to trade with each other.”
In March, Pakistan’s top economic decision-making body decided to resume bilateral trade with India, but the government rejected it unless India changed its position on Kashmir.
In this regard, the Prime Minister of Pakistan said, “India has crossed the border by revoking the special status of Kashmir. They need to return to their previous position before starting negotiations with us. There was no immediate response from India.
The governments of the two countries launched a behind-the-scenes diplomatic process earlier this year, aimed at setting an acceptable roadmap for normalizing relations in the next few months.
OD / JI
Source: ODHIKAR by www.odhikar.news.
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