Pak PM Nawaz Sharif raises Kashmir issue with UN chief

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Islamabad/United Nations, Sep 26: Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has raised the Kashmir issue during his meeting with UN chief Ban Ki-moon and expressed dismay over the cancellation of the Indo-Pak Foreign Secretary-level talks.

The two leaders met at the UN headquarters in New York yesterday during which the Prime Minister "expressed dismay over the cancellation of the Foreign Secretary-level talks by India which was a setback to the dialogue process", Pakistan Foreign Office said in a statement in Islamabad.

In August, India called off talks over Pakistani High Commissioner's meetings with Kashmiri separatists leaders. The two leaders discussed the need for improved bilateral relations with India during their meeting.

"Prime Minister pointed out that Kashmir was one of the long standing conflicts on the agenda of the UN Security Council and asked the Secretary General to take steps for its peaceful settlement in accordance with the relevant UN Security Council resolutions," the statement said. Prime Minister Sharif told Ban that his government had "sincerely embarked on negotiation process with India for peaceful resolution of all disputes."

He hoped that the Indian leadership would resume the dialogue process without any delay in the interest of peace and prosperity in the region, the statement added. In New York, Ban's spokesperson said, "The Secretary- General and the Prime Minister also discussed the need for improved relations between Pakistan and India."

The UN chief also discussed security situation in Pakistan and expressed hope that Islamabad would continue to improve bilateral ties with Afghanistan. Ban also conveyed his condolences to Sharif for the victims of the recent floods in Pakistan and his concern over the devastation caused by them. Sharif will address the UN General Assembly later today.


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