ISLAMABAD - Adviser to PM on Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz yesterday called on Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and discussed with him his upcoming visit to India to attend the Heart of Asia Conference.

Officials said that PM Sharif reiterated Pakistan’s policy of dialogue to resolve the bilateral issues including the Kashmir dispute in separate meetings with Sartaj Aziz and Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan.

The prime minister said Pakistan was attending the conference as it wanted stability in Afghanistan for the sake of regional peace.

An official statement said: “Sartaj Aziz met the PM and talked about the matters related to the Heart of Asia Conference in India.”

“They also exchanged views over the situation in Kashmir and Afghanistan. Nawaz asserted that Pakistan seeks peace and reconciliation in Afghanistan,” it added.

“Sartaj sought guidance from the PM on the Heart of Asia Conference in the context of improving peace and reconciliation in Afghanistan. They also discussed foreign policy matters,” it said.

During the meeting, Sharif said Pakistan wanted peace with India and stability in Afghanistan. He said Pakistan wanted to resolve all issues with India through dialogue but India was spreading war hysteria.

Nawaz Sharif said India’s war hysteria was hampering regional progress. The premier said India was fanning hatred by violating the Line of Control and the Working Boundary which was dangerous for the regional peace.

Sartaj Aziz will be attending the Heart of Asia Conference in Amritsar on December 4. The conference, which will be addressed by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, will see participation of over 40 countries.

This would be the first high-level visit from Pakistan after the announcement of Comprehensive Bilateral Dialogue in December last year which never took off in the wake of strikes, including the Pathankot airbase attack in January this year, and subsequent incidents which led to intense tension between the two countries.

Aziz, while announcing his visit, had asserted that it could be a “good opportunity” to “defuse the tension” between Pakistan and India. However, no bilateral meeting has so far been planned on the sidelines of the summit.

Earlier, the prime minister also met Interior Minister Chaudhary Nisar Ali Khan and discussed national security matters.

This was the interior minister’s first meeting with the premier after his return from London where he met various significant personalities.

The two discussed the security issues of the country besides the political developments, officials said. Pak-India ties were also discussed keeping in view the Heart of Asia conference.

Meanwhile, Sartaj conveyed condolences to the government and the people of Brazil on this human tragedy in which Brazil nationals including members of Chapecoense soccer team lost their lives in a plane crash.

Through a message to Jose Serra, the Foreign Minister of Brazil, the Adviser shared Pakistani nation’s grief and sympathies with the families of the victims of the unfortunate crash, said the foreign ministry.


Monitoring Desk: India on Thursday categorically shut down speculation over the possibility of talks with Pakistan's foreign policy adviser Sartaj Aziz during his visit to India for the Heart of Asia conference.

During a weekly news briefing in New Delhi, India’s Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson Vikas Swarup held true to India's stated policy that 'talks and terror do not go together'.

Addressing reports, especially in Pakistani media, that Aziz would be open to holding talks on the sidelines of the conference in Amritsar if he is approached by India, Swarup said "Talks cannot happen in a climate of continued terrorism. India will never accept continued terrorism as the new normal of the bilateral relationship."

Swarup said the primary reason for the current state of India-Pakistan relationship is the continued cross-border terrorism from Pakistan. "India is always prepared for talks with Pakistan. Anyone who says we have shied away from the dialogue or do not want the dialogue, they are way off the mark," he said.

"When Pakistan says talks should be without conditions, we are also saying the same thing. Stop cross-border terrorism, and we can talk," he added.