Pakistan media plays down terror attack

Pakistan media had a subdued coverage on terror attack in Jammu and Kashmir on Thursday even as it wondered whether there would be any impact on talks between Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and his counterpart Nawaz Sharif.

The websites of mainstream media carried prominently highlighted Singh's statement released in Frankfurt indicating that he will go ahead with talks with Sharif.

Most of them carried brief stories, mainly sourced from news agencies, about the attack. The Dawn said the attacks are "set to overshadow" the meeting between the Prime Minister’s on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly this weekend, the “first top-level dialogue in three years”.

It said the talks are expected to discuss rising violence in the Kashmir region and to promote cordial relations between the neighbouring countries.

“While Pakistani officials have not yet outlined the agenda for the Sharif-Singh meeting, Indian officials have said the issue of terrorism would figure prominently in the talks. Pakistani officials, however, underlined Sharif’s commitment to improving ties with India, pointing out that despite a downturn in ties after clashes at the Line of Control (LoC), the prime minister had been pushing for a meeting with Singh in New York," it added.

Pakistan's official news agency Associated Press of Pakistan (APP) reported that both the prime ministers will discuss a whole range of issues during their September 29 meeting, aimed at reducing tensions and resumption of peace process.

“Pakistan believes in the policy of dialogue. The dialogue should remain uninterrupted,” Foreign Ministry Spokesman Aizaz Ahmed Chaudhry was quoted as saying. The Pak Tribune also said the attacks will “cast a shadow” over the prime ministers’ meeting. Geo TV reported about Singh's statement and quoted him as describing the attack as "barbaric".

It said the attack came a day after Singh said he would be meeting his Pakistani counterpart Nawaz Sharif on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly.

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