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Relations with India cannot improve till Kashmir issue is resolved: PM

Prime Minister Imran Khan on Friday while giving a clear and unequivocal message said that ties with India could not be normalized without giving Kashmir right to self-determination.

The prime minister said this while presiding over a meeting in Islamabad. The meeting agreed on the decision not to resume any trade with India.

Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi and other officials of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs attended the meeting. The foreign ministry also briefed the meeting on proposals for trade with India.

Sources said that the meeting while agreeing on decision not to resume trade with arch-rival India said that the trade cannot be resumed until New Delhi reviews its 2019 move to revoke the disputed Kashmir region’s special status.

PM Imran Khan said that our position in principle is that there will be no trade with India without resolving the Kashmir issue, adding that it would send wrong impression that we ignored Kashmir and start trade with India.

“Relations with India cannot be normalized without giving Kashmir the right to self-determination,” he added.

Pakistan had unilaterally snapped ties with India in August 2019 to protest against the abrogation of Article 370 and bifurcation of the erstwhile state of Jammu and Kashmir into two union territories.

Last month, India and Pakistan also held the annual meeting of the Permanent Indus Commission (PIC) after a gap of more than two-and-a-half years. A delegation from Pakistan arrived in New Delhi to hold talks with India under the 1960 Indus Water Treaty (IWT).

In February, India and Pakistan had announced that they have agreed to a ceasefire along the Line of Control (LoC).

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