Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi on Monday made a strong pitch for the resumption of the India-Pak peace process, saying the two countries cannot allow themselves to be held hostage by terrorists.
Mr. Qureshi, who will represent Pakistan at the Commonwealth summit in Trinidad and Tobago next week, said his country believes it is in the interest of the region for the two countries to sit together and take things forward.
“This is not just in Pakistan’s interest, it is also in India’s interest. The best way to take things forward is the composite dialogue,” he told reporters in his hometown of Multan.
“We cannot be held hostage by terrorists. The terrorists have their objectives and they will desire that even if talks are being held, they should be prevented. Should we succumb to that?” he asked in response to a query about possible meetings with Indian leaders at a Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting during November 27-29.
Asked about the possibility of resumption of talks with India, Mr. Qureshi said Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s recent comments in this regard have been positive.
“He (Singh) said that dialogue is the only path for us to move forward,” he added.
Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani was earlier scheduled to attend the meeting but decided against going recently.