Foreign Minister Sushma meets ex-diplomats on Pakistan line

Foreign Minister Sushma meets  ex-diplomats on Pakistan line

Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj and Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar on Sunday met several top retired diplomats for a consultation on what would be India’s best strategy to deal with Pakistan on the diplomatic front.

The meeting was attended by S K Lambah, G Parthasarathy, Shyam Saran, Shivshankar Menon, Satyabrata Paul, Sharad Sabharwal and T C A Raghavan besides the Minister of State for External Affairs Gen V K Singh (rtd).

Though the engagement was scheduled much before, it assumes renewed significance in the wake of the terror strike on the Indian Air Force base in Pathankot.

“The external affairs minister’s meeting with former diplomats was prefixed and the government has not yet considered the option of calling off the dialogue. A decision would be taken after assessing the extent of Pakistan’s role,” government sources said.

“Operations continuing at Pathankot. Immediate focus is on resolving situation. It would be premature to say anything more at this point,” tweeted Vikas Swarup, the spokesperson for the Ministry of External Affairs.

Following Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s unprecedented visit to Lahore to have an informal discussion with his counterpart Nawaz Sharif, the two foreign secretaries are to meet on January 15 to decide on the contours of the dialogue process.

Modi’s visit was the first by an Indian prime minister to Pakistan in more than a decade after Atal Bihari Vajpayee.

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