Pakistan Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif has called for “serious and sincere” talks with his Indian counterpart Narendra Modi on “burning issues including Kashmir”. In an interview with Dubai-based Al-Arabiya news channel, Shehbaz proposed that the UAE could play an important role in bringing India and Pakistan to the table. He suggested that it was up to the two nations to “live peacefully and make progress” and not “waste time and resources on bombs and ammunition”. He also repeated Pakistan’s allegations of minorities being ‘persecuted’ in India.
However, soon after Sherif’s interview, the Pakistan Prime Minister Office issued a statement asserting that unless India reverses its illegal decision of August 5, 2019 (of revoking Article 370), talks cannot happen between the two countries. The spokesman for the PM Office stated that the Prime Minister had consistently maintained that Pakistan and India must resolve their bilateral issues, especially the core issue of Jammu & Kashmir, through dialogue and peaceful means. This position was made very clear in the Prime Minister’s interview with Al Arabiya news during his recent visit to the UAE. The settlement of the Kashmir dispute must be in accordance with the UN resolutions & aspirations of people of Jammu & Kashmir.