ISLAMABAD - France and Germany yesterday urged Pakistan and India to revive the dialogue process for regional peace.

Speaking at a joint news conference here, French Ambassador Marc Barety and German Ambassador Martin Kobler said people-to-people contacts and economic cooperation can improve Pak-India relations and address the bilateral disputes.

The media interaction was organized to mark the German-Franco friendship treaty signed on January 22, 1963.

The envoys’ call is significant as France and Germany too have a bitter past. The unavoidably hostile relations and mutual revanchism between Germans and French people arose in the 16th century and resulted in the Franco–Prussian War of 1870–1871.

It was an important factor in the unification of Germany and World War I, and was finally overcome after the World War I I, when under the influence of the Cold War cordial French–German relations became the key to European integration.

Pakistan and India also have fought three wars and in the recent years the relations have gone from bad to worse with little signs of improvement.

The ambassadors said that the renewal of 1963 agreement between France and Germany will open new avenues of cooperation in different sector, intensify peace efforts and help address present day challenges. French Ambassador Dr Marc Barety said that the agreement of 1963 turned the enmity between the two countries into a friendship and the benefit of this reconciliation went to the next generations.

He said that now the two countries will renew the agreement in Germany “which is aimed at strengthening our efforts to address the modern day challenges and requirements.”

The envoy said that the two countries had to focus the challenges being faced by European Union to counter different challenges and play role in ensuring peace in the region.

German Ambassador Martin Kobler said the new agreement would help promote bilateral cooperation in different sectors. “We want to strengthen our values through this agreement,” he added. He said Germany and France both were in phase of war which caused huge physical and economic losses.

At that time, he said: “Our leadership realized the damages and consequences of the war and stepped forward for dialogue which resulted in mutual cooperation between both the countries.” The whole Europe got united over the mutual cooperation and reconciliation policy of Germany and France, he said.

Martin Kobler said that Germany and France will jointly work for the issues and crisis being faced by the Europe and also cooperate with each other on the Brexit issue.

The renewal of treaty between France and Germany will discourage wars, enhance mutual cooperation, manage border cooperation and will address common threats of populism and Brexit, he added. “The treaty will also focus on integration of Europe-based on Germany and France cooperation,” he said.