Foreign Mins should meet, Pak tells India: Report

Islamabad: Pakistan has conveyed to India at the diplomatic level that their Foreign Ministers should meet to discuss the ceasefire violations on the Line of Control that triggered tensions, a media report said today.

The suggestion for talks was initially made through the media by Pakistan Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar to gauge the possible reaction from India. Subsequently, the message was taken up through diplomatic channels, The News quoted its sources as saying.

"Pakistan's request was conveyed at the diplomatic level, and Pakistan's suggestion was heard patiently and the gesture from Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar was appreciated," a senior official involved at the diplomatic level was quoted as saying.

"We also realise that for the time being, because of domestic concerns, this will take time but both sides realise that talks between them is the only way out," the official said.

Pakistan's High Commissioner to India, Salman Bashir, has conveyed to Indian authorities that Pakistan is ready to investigate the beheading of an Indian soldier during a ceasefire violation along the LoC.

India had earlier responded coolly to Khar's suggestion for talks between the Foreign Ministers, with External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid saying relations had hit "a low point" and it was important to get back to a "level of atmospherics that can be described as near normal."

He further said it was not sensible "to hasten and rush into things that you are not fully prepared for."

New Delhi has also rejected Pakistan's offer to have the ceasefire violations along the LoC investigated by the UN Military Observers Group.

Following a string of clashes along the LoC that marked the worst violations of the truce put in place in 2003, the Directors General of Military Operations of the two countries had discussed the issue.