Krishna gives a skip to Qureshi, chill deepens

Krishna gives a skip to Qureshi, chill deepens

Krishna gives a skip to Qureshi, chill deepens

S M Krishna

With India making it clear that Pakistan needs to do more to punish the perpetrators of the Mumbai attacks and dismantle the sanctuaries for terrorists, there was little hope of any attempt at diplomatic contact to resume the stalled dialogue.

"Pakistan has done little to address our concerns. There is little to be achieved by another meeting," official sources said.

Indian External Affairs Minister S.M. Krishna and his Pakistani counterpart Shah Mehmood Qureshi were in the Trinidad capital to attend the foreign ministers meeting of the Commonwealth countries.

Qureshi is also representing Pakistan at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM). Earlier, either Pakistan’s Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani or President Asif Ali Zardari were expected to come to attend the CHOGM, but kept away from the summit due to domestic situation.

Four days ago, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said in Washington that his government will not rest till the perpetrators of the Mumbai terrorist attacks are brought to justice and asked Pakistan to dismantle the terror infrastructure and all safe havens of terrorism.

The prime minister had stressed that since the conspiracy was basically hatched in Pakistan, it was their obligation to punish the masterminds of 26/11 attacks.
"It's our strong feeling that the government of Pakistan can do more to bring to book the perpetrators and masterminds of the ghastly crime who move about freely in Pakistan," Manmohan Singh said.

Venting Pakistan’s frustration at Indian response to its repeated pitch for the resumption of dialogue, Pakistan’s Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi said here that Islamabad wants “serious talks” with India and not “photo opportunities".

In an interview with CNN-IBN, Qureshi said India has not given enough evidence to nail Lashkar chief Hafiz Mohammad Saeed, the suspected mastermind of the Mumbai carnage.
“I have always welcomed a meeting but it has to be a meaningful meeting. I has to be a dialogue which has to be result oriented,” Qureshi said. "(India has) to respond, so far (India has) failed to respond. We are no longer interested in a photo opportunity," he said.

Qureshi stressed that the there was always the possibility of India and Pakistan resuming talks, but it must be “free of conditions".

"The possibility is there, you need political will ...we have to get out of the old mindset. We have a common element lets join hands to defeat the common element and if we miss that opportunity then we have not served over a billion people living in the subcontinent,” he said.