External Affairs Min S M Krishna leaves for Pak

New Delhi: External Affairs Minister S M Krishna today left on a three-day visit to Pakistan to hold talks with his Pakistani counterpart Hina Rabbani Khar during which he will stress for expeditious conclusion of Mumbai attacks trial.

Ahead of his visit, Krishna had made it clear that "it would be unrealistic to expect a barbaric terror attack such as Mumbai not to cause a major setback to our efforts to build peace and co-operation".

Asserting that Pakistan must address India`s "terrorism related concerns", he said India has given "more than adequate" evidence to Pakistan to enable them to bring the perpetrators of 26/11 to justice.

While no substantive outcome is expected from the visit, both the countries are likely to sign a new liberalised visa agreement which would be a boost for people-to-people contact.

Krishna and Khar will also review the resumed dialogue between the two countries, which has been termed as "successful".

The Minister, who will also chair the Joint Commission Meeting with Khar, will call on Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari and Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf. He will also be meeting leaders of certain Pakistani political parties besides visiting Lahore.

In an interview to PTI yesterday, Krishna said he looked forward to his discussions with Khar, "which I believe will serve to promote mutual understanding and trust between our two countries.

"India is of the view that normalisation of relations between India and Pakistan should be a step-by-step process. My visit to Pakistan is one more step in that approach," he said.