The much-awaited visit of External Affairs Minister S M Krishna to Pakistan is likely to happen in September.
Earlier the visit was scheduled in July 18-19, but it had to be postponed as the Presidential election was scheduled at the same time. Krishna’s visit will be reciprocal to the India visit of Pakistan Foreign Affairs Minister Hina Rabbani Khar.
Post-26/11 attacks, Indo-Pak dialogue seems to have been gaining momentum this year following a slew of visits from both the sides.
“We are looking for some time in the first half of September for me to visit Islamabad before the UN General Assembly meet,” Krishna told reporters here. “We had decided on July 19 as the date for me to travel to Pakistan, but we did not realise that the polling for the Presidential election would be on the same day. It has become incumbent on my part to be in India as part of the electoral college,” he added.
Earlier in the day, India and Pakistan issued a joint statement after the Foreign Secretary-level talks here. The two foreign secretaries will be meeting in Islamabad in the run-up to Krishna’s visit. As both the countries have agreed to carry forward the dialogue process in a ‘purposeful’ and ‘result-oriented manner’, Krishna’s visit might set base for the likely visit of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh later this year.
Seeks UAE’s Help for Sailors’ Release
Krishna has also sought help from his UAE counterpart for securing the release of six Indian sailors aboard MV Iceberg, which is in Somalian pirates’ captivity for over two years, adds PTI.
Iceberg, which has now become the longest-held ship by Somali pirates, is owned by UAE nationals.