Indian External Affairs minister to visit Pakistan next week: reports


NEW DELHI: Indian External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj is likely to visit Islamabad to attend Heart of Asia conference jointly hosted by Pakistan and Afghanistan on December 7.


According to Indian media reports, the key minister of Modi-government is expected to attend a 27-nation meeting on Afghanistan which will be held in Islamabad.


On November 9, Pakistani Foreign Adviser Sartaj Aziz and Afghan foreign minister Salahuddin Rabbani had sent invitation to 14 members and 17 supporting countries including India to attend the Heart of Asia conference.


The ‘Heart of Asia Conference’ will be held in Islamabad where Afghan peace will be the topic of main discussion besides cooperation between other regional countries.


The development comes days after Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and his Indian counterpart Narendra Modi held a short informal meeting on the sidelines of a global climate change summit in Paris.


The interaction between the two heads of states on November 30 is considered more than a ‘courtesy meeting,’ which was how government officials had described it.


Prime Minister Sharif had termed the meeting an encouragement saying, “Talks with Prime Minister Narendra Modi were good. Doors of dialogue should open.”


An initiative to revive the bilateral dialogue process taken during last Sharif-Modi meeting in Russia’ Ufa fell through at the last minute when the talks were cancelled earlier this year over a proposed meeting between Pakistan’s National Security Advisor Sartaj Aziz and the Kashmiri leaders.

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