Bilawal invited to visit India
According to the Indian Express report, Indian Foreign Minister S Jaishankar has sent an invitation through the Indian High Commission in Islamabad to his Pakistani counterpart Bilawal Bhutto Zardari for the meeting, which is to be held in Goa in the first week of May. The tentative dates for the SCO summit are May 4 and 5, and if Pakistan accepts the invitation, it will be the first such visit in 12 years. Earlier, Hina Rabbani Khar was the last Pakistani Foreign Minister to visit India in July 2011.
SCO conference will be held in India
The Shanghai Cooperation Organization includes China, Russia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan, apart from India and Pakistan. A similar invitation has also been sent to the foreign ministers of China and Russia along with the Central Asian countries. But, given the all-time low in bilateral ties, India’s invitation to Pakistan’s foreign minister is particularly significant. Speaking to The Indian Express, a top official said, “In keeping with its ‘neighbourhood first policy’, India desires normal neighborly relations with Pakistan. India’s position has always been that Any issue between India and Pakistan should be resolved bilaterally and peacefully in an environment free of terrorism and violence. It is the responsibility of Pakistan to create such a conducive environment”. The Indian official said that India will not compromise on issues related to national security and will take firm and decisive steps to deal with all attempts to undermine India’s security and territorial integrity.
It is also quite interesting that the Foreign Ministers of China and Russia have also been invited to India for the G-20 Foreign Ministers’ meeting, which is scheduled to take place on March 1 and 2, and according to the Indian Express report According to this, China’s new Foreign Minister Qin Gang is going to visit India twice in the next few months. At the same time, relations between India and Pakistan have deteriorated in the last eight years. In August 2015, India extended an invitation to Pakistan’s Foreign Minister Sartaj Aziz. But the then External Affairs Minister Late Sushma Swaraj asked Aziz to refrain from meeting Hurriyat in India, after which he did not come to India.
Sushma Swaraj went to Pakistan
The last foreign minister to visit Pakistan was former Indian External Affairs Minister Susanna Swaraj, who visited Pakistan in December 2015 for the Heart of Asia conference in Islamabad. Subsequently, bilateral relations deteriorated following terrorist attacks in Pathankot (January 2016), Uri (September 2016) and Pulwama (February 2019). At the same time, when India abolished Article 370 from Kashmir forever, then the diplomatic relations between the two countries also stopped. At the same time, Pakistan also suspended trade with India and stopped bus and train services across the border. Diplomatic relations between India and Pakistan could not start due to the tough stance taken by former Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan and his tough stand on terrorism.
Will relations improve in Shahbaz government?
When Nawaz Sharif was the Prime Minister in Pakistan, talks were held between India and Pakistan several times at different levels and now his brother Shehbaz Sharif is the Prime Minister of Pakistan, so it was already expected that There can be warmth in the relationship again. However, despite tensions, in the last few years there has been a ceasefire agreement on the border between the two countries, religious pilgrimages between the two countries have also increased, while the Indus Water Treaty has also been followed. However, former Prime Minister of Pakistan Imran Khan continued to make unflattering comments about the Indian Prime Minister, which increased the distance between the two countries. In December last year, Jaishankar described Pakistan as a “hotbed of terrorism”, while Bhutto made offensive remarks against Prime Minister Narendra Modi over the 2002 Gujarat riots, which the Indian Ministry of External Affairs described as “uncivilised” and “too hostile to Pakistan”. A new low”.
Is it possible to improve relations?
Earlier this month, Shehbaz Sharif called for “serious talks” with Modi on “burning issues like Kashmir”. The Indian Express has quoted sources as claiming that India has taken positive response to Shehbaz Sharif’s call for talks and the removal of China’s technical bid to declare Pakistani terrorist Abdul Rehman Makki as a global terrorist. However, Indian officials say that this is not a bilateral engagement, but that the two countries are engaging with each other in multilateral fora, citing cricket matches in multilateral tournaments as an example.