India will not discuss AFSPA with Pak during Islamabad talks

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New Delhi, June 20 (ANI): India has outrightly said that it will not be discussing the Armed Forcespecial Powers Act (AFSPA) with Pakistan during the forthcoming meetings between the foreign secretaries of India and Pakistan on June 24 and the Home Ministers' meeting on JUne 26.

Official sources here said "AFSPA is internal act to us and Pakistan does not have any local standi on it."

Why is AFSPA enforced in Jammu and Kashmir? Because there is militancy.

Why is militancy there? There is an external call to it and it tends to abetted from across the border," the source added.

According to Pakistani media reports, there are indications that Islamabad could ask for a withdrawal of the AFSP Act in Jammu and Kashmir on grounds that the security forces have been involved in human rights violations.

The media reports further say that Islamabad is also expected to seek the release of political prisoners to improve the ground situation in Jammu and Kashmir when Foreign Secretary Salman Bashir meets his Indian counterpart Nirupama Rao.

Cross-border terrorism has bedevilled Indo-Pak relations, and, New Delhi believes that the terror threat from Pakistan to India and Indian interests in Afghanistan has not diminished, and therefore,Islamabad needs to introspect on its anti terror policy.

"We keep receiving reports of the planning of attacks from Pakistan,these reports have not ceased. We have continued concerns. It underscores that Pakistan should take the issue seriously," official sources said.

Foreign Secretary Rao and Union Home Minister P.Chidambaram are also expected to raise the issue of cease-fire violations and infiltration during interactions with their Pakistani counterparts in Islamabad next week. (ANI)

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