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Pakistan to resume talks with India only after elections: Minister

Islamabad is willing to resume peace talks with New Delhi but only after elections in India, Pakistan’s information minister Fawad Chaudhry has said.

Terming the present circumstances unfit for talks, Chaudhry told Gulf News in an interview, “We have delayed our efforts to hold talks with India because we do not expect any big decision from the present Indian leadership.”

“It is useless to talk to them now unless there is some stability. We will move forward once the new government is formed after the elections.”

He said opening of the Kartarpur Corridor between India and Pakistan last November would not only help the Sikh community but also improve bilateral ties.

Asked which Indian leader Pakistan would prefer for peace talks, the minister said, “We will respect any Indian leader and the party elected by the Indian people. And, we would like to move forward to hold dialogue with whosoever comes into power in India.”

He said Pakistan was playing its role at a fairly advanced level for the Afghan peace dialogue. “We expect a positive outcome from the negotiations between the US and the Afghan Taliban.”

US President Donald Trump also wrote a letter to Prime Minister Imran Khan last year, seeking Islamabad’s help in facilitating a negotiated settlement of the lingering conflict in Afghanistan.

Chaudhry said a meeting between Khan and Trump is on the cards but it would be possible only after the peace talks. “We are waiting to see this happen,” he said.