Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesperson Tasnim Aslam was asked if Pakistan was ready to look beyond its stated position as India says the UN resolutions do not stand because of the Simla agreement.

Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesperson Tasnim Aslam on Thursday said, in response to questions, that the argument of the Simla agreement having made UN Security Council resolutions on Kashmir invalid had no legal basis.

Ms Aslam was asked, in the light of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif's statement, if Pakistan was ready to look for options other than its stated position since India says that the UN resolutions do not stand because of the Simla agreement. She said that countries are condemned every year on various forums in the UN, on one issue or the other, for violating the UN General Assembly and Security Council resolutions.

"I don't understand how can one country decide that UN resolutions are no more valid and how can a bilateral agreement, which does not even say that this intends to override the UN Security Council resolutions, which in any case it could not, override the UN Security Council resolutions," she explained.

If at some stage India and Pakistan reach an agreement on the settlement of the Kashmir dispute, legally speaking, she pointed out they would have to go back to the UN Security Council to get another resolution to endorse that agreement.

She welcomed the recent statement by the Indian foreign secretary to a delegation of Pakistani journalists that a solution to Kashmir is in India's interest as well. Ms Aslam said that, "I think we have reached a stage where the choices before our countries are very clear. We have to have peace for progress, development and for stability. To have sustainable peace, we need to have serious negotiations and settlement of all the disputes and outstanding issues."

Regarding the death of an Indian fisherman in Landhi jail, she said the foreign office had not got any details but it had seen reports that he was ailing for a long time. She said there is the question of the dead body of another person who died earlier. These issues have been discussed and the foreign office was working with the Indian High Commission to make sure that their bodies are repatriated to India.

On the stand off on the trade across the Line of Control (LoC), she said the bus service has been resumed from Monday last. On the trucks issue also, discussions are going on. The Indian High Commissioner met the Foreign Secretary and among other things, this issue was discussed. "We have accepted the Indian proposal for an early convening of the Joint Working Group on cross LoC trade in order to revisit the modalities. We have been talking about enhancing the monitoring and scanning procedures. So these could be taken up in the meeting of this committee," she added.