Singh-Gilani talks imparted seriousness of purpose
"Pakistan had positively evaluated the talks and welcomed India`s readiness for a broad ranging engagement," Khar said in a statement issued here by the Foreign Office, a day after Manmohan Singh met his Pakistani counterpart Yosuf Raza Gilani on the margins of the SAARC summit in Maldives.
She said the bilateral summit in Maldives had "contributed to impel a seriousness of purpose to the process of engagement, with both sides reaffirming their commitment to the pursuit of peace and discussing all outstanding issues, including Jammu and Kashmir, in a result-oriented manner".
India and Pakistan had agreed during the talks to finalise a calendar of meetings, Khar said. They further agreed to convene meetings of technical working groups prior to the holding of a meeting of the Pakistan-India Joint Commission, she added.
Khar remarked that Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani and his Indian counterpart Manmohan Singh "had noted that terrorism was a common problem". She said: "Instead of remaining mired in accusations and counter-accusations, the real way forward was cooperation."
The Interior and Home Secretaries of the two countries had been mandated to discuss counter-terrorism and counter-narcotics, she said.
Pakistan`s Interior Minister Rehman Malik "was prepared to visit New Delhi and was awaiting dates for the visit from India", Khar said. Pakistan was also awaiting dates for the visit of a Judicial Commission from India.
Though Khar did not give details, this commission is expected to question Pakistani suspects charged with involvement in the 2008 Mumbai attacks.
Khar further said that the Mumbai attacks, the bombing of the Samjhauta Express train and other terror-related matters "needed to be addressed by both sides in the Interior-Home Ministries segment".
After meeting Gilani, Prime Minister Singh on Thursday said, "the time has come to write a new chapter in the history of two countries and the era of accusations and counter-accusations should be behind us."