Imran Khan congratulates Modi; expresses desire to work with him for peace in South Asia
Islamabad, May 23: Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan on Thursday congratulated his Indian counterpart Narendra Modi on his victory in the general elections and expressed desire to work with him for peace, progress and prosperity in the region.
Prime Minister Modi led his Bharatiya Janata Party towards what looks set to be a resounding victory for a second term in office. "I congratulate Prime Minister Modi on the electoral victory of BJP and allies. Look forward to working with him for peace, progress and prosperity in South Asia," Khan tweeted.
The results of India's general elections are very significant for Pakistan as the formation of the next government in New Delhi will determine the course of Indo-Pakistan ties, which were pushed to a new low after the Pulwama terror attack. In April, Khan said he believed there may be a better chance of peace talks with India and settle the Kashmir issue if Modi's party BJP wins the general elections. Tensions flared up between India and Pakistan after a suicide bomber of Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Muhammed (JeM) killed 40 CRPF personnel in Kashmir's Pulwama district on February 14.
Amid mounting outrage, the Indian Air Force (IAF) carried out a counter-terror operation, hitting the biggest JeM training camp in Balakot, deep inside Pakistan on February 26. The next day, Pakistan Air Force retaliated and downed a MiG-21 in an aerial combat and captured an IAF pilot, who was handed over to India.
On Wednesday, Pakistan's Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi said that his country has delivered a "message of peace" by opening the Kartarpur Corridor for Sikh pilgrims from India as he underlined the importance of "conflict resolution" for peace and stability in South Asia. Addressing the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation Council of Foreign Ministers' meeting in Bishkek, the Kyrgyz capital, also attended by External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj, Qureshi said enduring peace and prosperity in South Asia will remain elusive without good-faith diplomacy and result-oriented dialogue.