Islamabad-Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi has said that no progress must be expected on resuming peace talks with India before the 2019 Lok Sabha elections. Addressing mediapersons after a meeting of Pakistan’s Senate Standing Committee of Foreign Affairs in Islamabad, Qureshi said that the issue of dialogue with India was discussed during the meet.
According to Pakistan-based The Express Tribune, the panel was also briefed by the government on the recent visit of Prime Minister Imran Khan to Saudi Arabia and China, apart from status of Pakistan’s relationship with neighbours India and Afghanistan.
This comes less than a month after Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan said that anti-Pakistan rhetoric rakes in votes in India. Pointing that relationship with Pakistan is a poll issue in India, Imran Khan had said that he would again extend a “hand of friendship” to India after the completion of 2019 Lok Sabha elections.
The Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) chief had made the remark while addressing mediapersons at the Future Investment Initiative Forum in Riyadh.
Talking about Pakistan’s efforts to mend ties with neighbours, Imran Khan said that he had extended a hand of friendship to India soon after assuming power, but the same was rebuffed by New Delhi. He had also cited that India had called off talks between External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and her Pakistani counterpart Shah Mahmood Qureshi on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly session.
State-run Radio Pakistan had quoted the country’s Prime Minister as saying that “peace with India would help the two countries to divert their resources towards human development instead of indulging in arms race”