PM Imran renews call for peace in congratulatory letter to Modi

10:15 PM | 7 Jun, 2019
PM Imran renews call for peace in congratulatory letter to Modi
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ISLAMABAD – Prime Minister Imran Khan and Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi have sent letters of felicitation to their Indian counterparts on assumption of their offices, stressing Pakistan's desire of a peaceful neighbourhood.

The letters were sent to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and External Affairs Minister Subrahmanyam Jaishankar earlier this week in line with established diplomatic norms and inter-state practice, the Radio Pakistan reported citing official sources on Friday.

The letters underscored Pakistan's vision of working for durable peace and stability in South Asia with peaceful resolution of all outstanding issues, including the Jammu and Kashmir dispute.

Both the PM and the foreign minister in their separate letters emphasised the need to work with India on the basis of mutual respect and trust, to address challenges faced by people of both the countries including poverty and underdevelopment.

The need to advance the goals of regional peace, progress and prosperity through collective endeavours was underscored.

This is the third consecutive letter by Imran to his Indian counterpart since he took office last year. Soon after taking over the reins in Islamabad, Prime Minister Imran had inked a letter to Modi, urging him to resume the dialogue process between the two countries that has been suspended since 2015.

Modi opted not to respond to the offer as elections were approaching in India amid heightened tensions on Pak-India border following a militant attack on an Indian army convoy in Pulwama district of Occupied Kashmir.

On February 26, Indian Air Force jets violated Pakistan’s aerial territory and dropped multiple bombs in Balakot area, claiming it was a ‘surgical strike’ against alleged militants.

The next day, Pakistan responded with an even more aggressive surgical strikes targeting open fields after locking several military installations in the Held-Kashmir on radar, which caused no human loss on the Indian side.

Meanwhile, the PAF also downed two Indian Air Force jets who had launched a counter attack. An IAF pilot, Wing Commander Abhinandan, was also captured and later released by Pakistan in a goodwill gesture.

On May 2, Prime Minister Imran wrote another letter to congratulate Premier Modi on his election win, reiterating his offer for reopening dialogue with India.