Pakistan turns down backchannel talks with India: report

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ISLAMABAD: According to a report in The Express Tribune, Pakistan has refused backdoor talks with neighbour India over the Kashmir crisis.

The report claimed that ‘some powerful countries as well as certain Muslim states’ wanted Pakistan to engage in backdoor diplomacy with India.

Prime Minister Khan was also asked to tone down his criticism of India and Modi. Khan has likened Modi to Hitler and the RSS to the BJP.

However, sources in the report claimed that Pakistan turned down the request and stated that it would partake in conventional and quiet diplomacy with India.

Tensions escalated between the two nuclear-armed nations after India revoked Article 370 that recognised occupied Kashmir as a special territory. The article’s revocation meant India had annexed the territory illegally.

Pakistan reacted sharply to the development–it downgraded ties with New Delhi and suspended trade with India.

Earlier this month, the UAE’s deputy foreign minister and Saudi Arabia’s foreign minister met Shah Mahmood Qureshi. The two, according to the report, conveyed a message from certain Muslim states and powerful countries to engage in backdoor talks with India.

“The discussions were so confidential that only top officials of the foreign ministry were allowed to sit in those meetings,” a source was quoted in the report as saying.

According to the official, the international powers requested Prime Minister Khan to stop his verbal attacks against Modi. They urged India to ease some of the restrictions it had imposed in occupied Kashmir.

Prime Minister Khan has already stated that he would exposed India during his September 27 address at the United Nations General Assembly session. Khan said that he would expose atrocities being committed by India in the occupied territory.