India refutes Pak media reports of Modi agreeing for peaceful talks

Madhuri Adnal

New Delhi, June 20: Reacting to Pakistan media report that claimed on Thursday that India has finally agreed to revive peace talks with Pakistan, the Ministry of External Affairs said that PM Modi and EAM Jaishankar's letters were in response to congratulatory messages from Islamabad.

Earlier in the day, a Pakistani media report The Express Tribune claimed that Prime Minister Narendra Modi and External Affairs Minister Subrahmanyam Jaishankar wrote letters to their Pakistani counterparts, Imran Khan and Shah Mehmood Qureshi, respectively.

Earlier this month, Imran Khan, in a letter written to felicitate Modi on assuming office for a second term, had renewed Pakistan's offer to hold dialogue with India to resolve contentious issues, including the Jammu and Kashmir dispute and terrorism, to restore peace in the region, and address the problems confronting the people of the two countries.

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Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi had also written a letter to the newly appointed Jaishankar and congratulated him on assuming office.

Ties between India and Pakistan have been strained following the 14 February suicide attack in Kashmir's Pulwama region, for which a Pakistan-based terrorist group claimed responsibility. Following which India on 26 February bombed a terrorist training camp in Pakistan's Balakot region. And on 27 February, Pakistan retaliated by targeting military installations in Kashmir. Pakistan's air raid was, however, foiled by Indian Air Force fighter jets.

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