Islamabad: Pakistan Thursday said the four-point peace initiative presented by Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif at the UN General Assembly is the way forward for reducing tensions and resolution of outstanding disputes with the eastern neighbour. “Sooner or later, India would realise the wisdom behind these proposals as they present an opportunity to reduce tensions and resolve all outstanding issues between the two countries,” Foreign Office spokesperson Qazi Khalilullah told weekly press briefing. He said Islamabad is ready for talks with New Delhi without preconditions, emphasising that Pakistan has insisted for negotiations on all issues including the core dispute of Jammu and Kashmir.

Commenting on the dossiers Islamabad handed over to the UN chief Ban Ki-moon, the spokesperson said it was to inform the secretary general about the Indian involvement in fomenting terrorism in Pakistan. Islamabad will continue to inform the United Nations about its concerns in this regard in future as well, he added. Commenting on violence erupting in India over cow-slaughter, Khalilullah regretted it saying the country which claims to be a secular state should guarantee the basic rights to minorities. “Attacks on Muslims on the issue of cow slaughtering are beyond comprehension and a cause of concern for the Muslim Ummah, he said, expressing the hope that India will take steps to provide security to its Muslim citizens. Answering a question about nuclear cooperation, he said Pakistan seeks cooperation of the international community including the US in the field of civil nuclear energy. “There should be no discrimination about access to peaceful use of nuclear energy which Pakistan is producing to meet its national needs.” Commenting on Afghan Taliban’s recent efforts to take over Kunduz province, the spokesperson condemned the occupation of Afghan territory by any group and strongly rejected allegations that Pakistani agencies or forces were involved in attacks in Afghanistan.

He said Pakistan has been helping Afghanistan in countering terrorism as well as in economic development. “We are in touch with the Afghan authorities to restore trust level between the two countries”, he said, adding Pakistan has been supporting Afghan-led and Afghan-owned dialogue process. The country, he pointed out, also hosted the first round of formal peace talks between Afghan government and the Taliban in Murree. “If the two sides agree, we are still ready to facilitate them,” the spokesperson said. 

Answering a question about presence of Islamic State or Daish, the spokesperson said Pakistan condemns terrorism in all its forms and manifestations and will not tolerate the presence of Daish or any of its associated groups on its territory. On Russian airstrikes in Syria, the spokesperson said Pakistan has a principled position on the issue based on neutrality, impartiality, and respect of territorial integrity and sovereignty of Syria. “Pakistan stands for peaceful solution of the issue through dialogue led by the Syrian people,” he added.

The spokesperson said all out efforts were being made to locate the 43 Pakistani pilgrims who went missing after Mina tragedy, adding that 89 Pakistani pilgrims were martyred and five others wounded in the incident. He said the Saudi authorities extended full cooperation to Pakistan in identification of martyrs and finding of missing pilgrims. He said Saudi Arabia has been making excellent haj arrangements over the last many years and Pakistan has full confidence in abilities of Saudi authorities in managing this process.