Talks with Pakistan will depend on 'political pressures' at that time: Farooq Abdullah

Srinagar, Sept. 8 (ANI): Minister of New and Renewable Energy and Chairperson of Jammu and Kashmir National Conference Farooq Abdullah on Sunday said political pressures will be a crucial factor on whether Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh would meet his Pakistani counterpart Nawaz Sharif in the United States of America this month.

"Pressures are always going to be there. Talks with Nawaz Sharif will depend entirely on what the situation will be when the Prime Minister reaches America and how much better the relations between India and Pakistan will be at that time," Abdullah said.

"Political pressures will definitely affect it," he added.

Earlier, on Saturday, Dr. Manmohan Singh categorically said that he would be in a position to meet his Pakistani counterpart Nawaz Sharif only after Islamabad addresses New Delhi's concerns on 'unacceptable' incidents that have taken place in the recent past.

"I have always maintained that we can choose our friends, but we have no choice with regard to our neighbours. And, therefore, under normal conditions, I would be happy to meet with Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, whom I respect, who has said the right things about how relations between our two countries should evolve. But, there are certain harsh realities on the ground," said Dr. Singh when asked that the possibility of a meeting between him and his Pakistani counterpart on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly in New York has been a matter of intense speculation.

"If the terror acts do not stop; if those who voice terrorist thoughts move about freely; if there is no significant progress in bringing the culprits of the Mumbai massacre to book; - that I have to factor in before arriving at a final decision," he added, while returning home from the G20 Summit in St. Petersburg.

While India has appreciated Sharif's regret for the 'loss of precious lives' in the August 6 LoC ceasefire violation, which saw five Indian soldiers dead, New Delhi has insisted that Islamabad must take responsibility for the incident as the ambush would not have been possible without help from Pakistani agencies.

Some Indian defence analysts have, however, said that Dr. Singh should not hold any talks with his Pakistani counterpart on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly in New York till the Pakistani Prime Minister ensures that Pakistan soil is not used for terrorist activities in India. (ANI)

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