‘Manmohan visit to pak will reduce trust deficit’ | delhi | Hindustan Times
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‘Manmohan visit to pak will reduce trust deficit’

delhi Updated: Jan 21, 2011 01:08 IST
Ht correspondent

A visit by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to Pakistan could be one big measure in addressing the trust deficit between the two neighbours, said former foreign minister of PakistanKhurshid Mahmud Kasuri on Thursday.

When asked whether Pakistan army chief General Ashfaq Parvez Kayan would come to India if invited, he said, “it is in the realm of possibility”. He also maintained Pakistan army is not an impediment to the peace process between the two countries. Kasuri was speaking after delivering a lecture ‘Evolution of the India-Pakistan relations in the first decade of 21st century’.

When asked about one or two steps that can address the trust deficit between the two countries which was otherwise
hampering the dialogue process he said, “The visit of Prime Minister of India to Pakistan.”

Kasuri, who was foreign minister of Pakistan from 2002 to 2007, stressed on the need to enlarge the constituency
of peace and reduce the trust deficit between the countries.

Talking about the back-channel diplomacy that made considerable progress in improving the ties between the two neighbours, Kasuri said both countries almost reached a draft agreement. What was left was the two sides “selling it to their respective constituencies”.

He said the Pakistan army was on board on these talks in 2006-2007. He said demilitarisation, self-governance and a joint mechanism involving Kashmiris from both sides were the components of that proposed agreement.