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Cancellation of Indo-Pak FM meeting 'disappointing':Pakistan

Press Trust of India  |  Islamabad 

The cancellation of the Indo-Pak foreign ministers' meeting in by on "flimsy pretexts" was "disappointing", said Thursday, asserting that it wants peaceful and good-neighbourly relations with on the basis of sovereign equality, mutual respect and mutual benefit.

called off a meeting between the foreign ministers of the two countries last month, citing the brutal killings of three policemen in and releasing postage stamps "glorifying" Kashmiri militant

"We cannot force any country to negotiate...first agreed and in less than 24 hours, withdrew its agreement," told reporters here during the

He said the only way forward is through dialogue, which should be uninterrupted and uniterruptible.

The "cancellation of the meeting of the Foreign Ministers of India and Pakistan, which was to be held on the sidelines of UN General Assembly in last month, by India on flimsy pretexts, was disappointing."

The ties between the two sides had strained after the terror attacks by Pakistan-based groups in 2016 and India's surgical strikes inside Pakistan-occupied

Faisal said that has always desired peaceful and good-neighbourly relations with India, on the basis of sovereign equality, mutual respect and mutual benefit.

"We have formally announced that we are ready for a dialogue with India to settle all our disputes, but as you know it takes two hands to clap," he said.

"If India is not ready to come to the table, we do not have any other way forward to find a solution to our problems. It takes two to tango," he added.

When asked about any secret meeting between the two ministers, the expressed his ignorance, saying, "I do not know about any secret meeting."

Responding to a question on the opening of the Kartarpur Corridor for Sikh pilgrims, Faisal said, "in the absence of any dialogue, nothing can move forward."

Kartarpur is situated in Narowal district of Pakistan's province, close to Indo-Pak border. It was established by the first Sikh Guru in 1522. The first Gurdwara, Gurdwara Kartarpur Sahib, was built here, where is said to have died.

Kartarpur Sahib in is located across the river Ravi, about four kilometres from the in Punjab's district.

Indian cricketer-turned-politician Navjot Singh Sidhu, who had attended Imran Khan's swearing in ceremony in in August, has said that hinted at opening of the route to Gurdwara Kartarpur Sahib on the occasion of the 550th birth anniversary of

The 550th birth anniversary of is being observed in November 2019.

Noting that the has written a letter to the regarding the opening of the Kartarpur crossing, Faisal said, "but as I said earlier, in the absence of any dialogue or negotiations, no matter can be resolved."

He said had responded positively to a letter from his Indian countarpart.

Faisal said Pakistan is ready to hold talks for resolving Kashmir, Sir Creek and Siachen issues.

On SAARC conference, Faisal said all the member states, except India, are positive on the holding of SAARC Summit in Pakistan.

SAARC Summits are usually held biennially, hosted by a member state in alphabetical order. The last SAARC Summit in 2014 was held in

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Thu, October 11 2018. 20:40 IST