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Ask India to reciprocate

IT is surprising that instead of asking Indian to reciprocate
to Pakistan’s peace overtures, the United States is urging Pakistan to take sustained and irreversible steps to improve ties with India. The very remarks of the White House official came as Pakistan renewed its efforts to engage India in direct talks for reducing tension with its eastern border.
Since the re-election of Narendra Modi as the Indian Prime Minister last month, Prime Minister Imran Khan has sent two letters to New Delhi underlining Islamabad’s desire for better relations between South Asia’s two nuclear armed neighbours. In his second letter, the Prime Minister told his Indian counterpart that Pakistan wants to peacefully resolve all its differences with India particularly the core issue of Jammu & Kashmir whilst in its first letter, he also agreed to hold talks on the issue of terrorism on India’s demand. The fact of the matter is that Pakistan has never shied from talks but it is New Delhi which is using pretexts to avoid direct talks with Pakistani leadership. This shows that the government in India is not interested to resolve the outstanding disputes between the two countries. As regards the issue of terrorism is concerned, Pakistan itself has suffered immensely as a result of this menace. It is because of sacrifices of our defence forces and the people, the scourge has been checked to a great deal but there are elements backed by our enemy which are once again active in tribal areas and Balochistan to undermine peace in the country. This is not rhetoric or mere an accusation as the very statement of Kulbushan Yadav is very much on record. Then, the very statements of US officials are also very much on record admitting that India is stoking instability in Pakistan. Therefore, instead of dictating Pakistan on the issue of terrorism, the US Administration should use its influence on India and stop it from playing a proxy war in Pakistan via Afghanistan. The US needs to shun its biasness and rather taking sides should act with neutrality to bring both Pakistan and India on the table of negotiations which in fact is the only way forward to ensure peace and stability in the South Asian region.