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Updated: July 19, 2010 16:41 IST

Qureshi rakes up Kashmir during U.S.-Pak dialogue

PTI
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Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi shows U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton the way at the Foreign Ministry ahead of their meeting in Islamabad on Monday. Photo: AP
Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi shows U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton the way at the Foreign Ministry ahead of their meeting in Islamabad on Monday. Photo: AP

Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi on Monday raked up the Kashmir issue and said his country wants a sustained dialogue with India.

Mr. Qureshi, who has been blowing hot and cold against India in the last few days after a deadlock in the India-Pak talks, said, “sustaining dialogue with India and finding a just solution of the Kashmir dispute” was part of the “convergent interest” of the U.S. and Pakistan. The Pakistan Foreign Minister referred to Kashmir and India in his opening remarks at the U.S.-Pak Strategic Dialogue with U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in Islamabad on Monday morning.

“This vision is driven by our convergent interest in the present day including fighting the twin menace of extremism and terrorism,” Mr. Qureshi said, referring to the mutual interest of the two countries in the region.

During the joint press conference by Ms. Clinton and Mr. Qureshi, there was no reference to Kashmir, India or last week’s meeting of the two Foreign Ministers.

However, diplomatic sources said Ms. Clinton told the Pakistani leadership during the Strategic Dialogue that the U.S. wants continuation of Indo-Pak dialogue so that the two sides could amicably resolve their outstanding problems.

Ms. Clinton made the remarks after Mr. Qureshi briefed her on the meeting between the Foreign Ministers of India and Pakistan here on July 15.

“The Secretary of State made it clear that the U.S. is interested that the process between Pakistan and India should be sustained,” a diplomatic source familiar with the discussions told PTI.

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