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Business News/ News / India/  Bilawal Bhutto on what strained India-Pakistan ties: 'Ending J&K. . .'
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Bilawal Bhutto on what strained India-Pakistan ties: 'Ending J&K. . .'

The onus was on India to create a conducive environment for talks, Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari told reporters on the sidelines of the SCO meeting, blaming India ending Kashmir's status in 2019

Pakistan's Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto during the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) Foreign Ministers' meeting, in Goa, India on Friday (ANI)Premium
Pakistan's Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto during the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) Foreign Ministers' meeting, in Goa, India on Friday (ANI)

Pakistan's foreign minister Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari, who is in India to attend the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) meeting in Goa on Friday said that the talks between India and Pakistan were hurt by the former's 2019 decision to end the special status granted to Jammu & Kashmir territory. 

Ties between India and Pakistan came under severe strain after India announced withdrawing special powers of Jammu and Kashmir and bifurcation of the state into two union territories in August 2019.

The onus was on India to create a conducive environment for talks, Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari told reporters on the sidelines of a meeting of regional bloc Shanghai Cooperation Organisation in the Indian state of Goa.

India-Pakistan Cricket

On the ongoing disparity between India and Pakistan especially during the cricket matches, Bhutto-Zardari said that he hoped India and Pakistan relations have not gone so sour that ‘sports has to suffer’. 

Bilawal Bhutto was answering questions on sending Pakistan Men's Cricket team to India for the upcoming World Cup 2023, scheduled to be held in India.

Jibes ensue between India and Pakistan

The visit by Bhutto-Zardari to India is the first by a Pakistani foreign minister in over a decade. Notably, India and Pakistan have fought three wars, shared frosty relations and have downgraded their diplomatic ties.

The Pakistani foreign minister too on Friday imploded that despite his rare visit to India, there was no change in the status of diplomatic relations.

Further, Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari on Friday called for a collective approach by the SCO to combat terrorism and not get caught up in "weaponising terrorism for diplomatic point scoring". He saidd,"unilateral and illegal measures by States in violation of international law and Security Council resolutions run counter to the SCO objectives."

"We need to be unambiguous in keeping our commitments and charting out a new future for our people. One that is not based on conflict preservation but on conflict resolution," he said.

His remarks at SCO came shortly after External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar said terrorism in all its forms, including cross-border terrorism, must be stopped.

"... We firmly believe that there can be no justification for terrorism and it must be stopped in all its forms and manifestations, including cross-border terrorism," Jaishankar said, in an apparent reference to Pakistan's support to terrorist activities against India.

He also talked about the need for ensuring respect for universally recognised principles such as peace, cooperation, regional integration and economic opportunities within the SCO.

Future of India Pakistan

Bhutto told reporters that he hoped when Pakistan hosts the SCO meet in 2026, ‘India will decide to participate’.

“In 2026, when Pakistan will be chair of SCO, I believe that on the basis of a diplomatic reciprocal arrangement, India will decide to participate in the SCO. At the heart of our hearts, every Pakistani and all Indians want to live in peace and peace is our destiny. We won’t be held hostage by history. We will make our own history, " Pakistan's PTV quoted Pakistan's Foreign Minister.

(With inputs from agencies)

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Published: 05 May 2023, 06:25 PM IST
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