Qureshi on 4-day official visit to India from June 27

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Islamabad, Jun 22: Pakistan's Foreign Minister Makhdoom Shah Mahmood Qureshi will visit India on June 27, leading a six-member delegation comprising senior officials and recently appointed Pakistan Ambassador-at-Large Nasir Ali Khan.

During his four-day official visit, Qureshi will hold talks with major political leaders and interact with business leaders. He will also travel to Ajmer and Chandigarh. The Foreign Minister will be accompanied by senior Foreign Ministry officials and will hold bilateral talks the same day with External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee at the historical Hyderabad House, sources told The News today. Qureshi's visit will pave the way for the fifth round of the composite dialogue and the long-standing visit of the Indian premier to Pakistan.

He is also expected to meet Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Congress President Sonia Gandhi on Friday, June 27. A meeting with Indian President Pratibha Patil is also likely, sources added.

During his discussions with Pranab Mukherjee, the Pakistan Foreign Minster will follow-up on the important decisions they took during their first meeting here last month, particularly the finalisation of the pending agreement on liberalisation of the visa regime, officials said.

Other key items on the agenda would be the Jammu and Kashmir issue, Sir Creek, Siachen, economic cooperation and trade matters.

Pakistan's High Commissioner to India Shahid Malik will accompany him to all the meetings, the newspaper said.

Qureshi will also meet Leader of the Opposition in the Lok Sabha L K Advani and former prime minister Atal Behari Vajpayee on June 28, besides some senior leaders of the allied parties of the United Progressive Alliance government, it added.

The upcoming visit of the foreign minister acquires special significance as it would set the tone for the next round of Pakistan-India Composite Dialogue and future course of bilateral engagement.

UNI

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