Qureshi calls Krishna; talk bilateral relations

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New Delhi, Jan 25 (PTI) External Affairs Minister S MKrishna today renewed invitation to his Pakistani counterpartS M Qureshi to visit India to "carry forward" the dialogueprocess to which the Pakistan minister responded positivelybut did not indicate when he will travel.

The invitation by Krishna was reiterated during aphone call made by Qureshi to convey felicitations on theoccasion of India''s Republic Day during which the twoministers also discussed Indo-Pak relations, according to aministry statement.

The two leaders also hoped for a "positive outcome" ofthe meeting between the Foreign Secretaries of India andPakistan in Thimpu on the margins of a SAARC Committeemeeting.

"The Ministers had a brief exchange of views onbilateral relations. Referring to the forthcoming meetingbetween the Foreign Secretaries of India and Pakistan inThimpu, the ministers hoped for a positive outcome.

"External Affairs Minister reiterated his invitationto Qureshi to visit India at a mutually convenient date, tocarry forward the dialogue process. Qureshi stated that helooked forward to visiting New Delhi," the statement said.

Earlier, in a message of greetings sent to PrimeMinister Manmohan Singh on India''s Republic Day, his Pakistanicounterpart Yousuf Raza Gilani said: "I avail this opportunityto reiterate Pakistan''s strong commitment to pursue our desireto develop friendly relations on the basis of sovereignequality and commonality of interest."

"We are also committed to resolving all outstandingissues, including the core issue of Jammu and Kashmir andwater disputes, towards realising the vision of a peaceful andprosperous South Asia."

Maintaining that India was ready to discuss alloutstanding issues, the sources here said terrorism remains a"core issue" for the country which Pakistan needs to address.

Asserting that "terror is something that cannot bebrushed aside because terror is a matter of fact, Krishnayesterday said, "It is necessary that we (India-Pakistan)should find a common wavelength in terms of fighting terror."

Qureshi also thanked Krishna for his letter ofcondolences on the assassination of Governor Salman Taseer.

Krishna said that it was a tragic incident and once againconveyed his deep sympathies to members of the bereavedfamily.

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