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Pak Foreign Secretary to arrive for talks

delhi Updated: Feb 24, 2010 12:38 IST

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Pakistan Foreign Secretary Salman Bashir, along with a five-member delegation, will reach New Delhi today for talks with his Indian counterpart Nirupama Rao, the first formal bilateral talks in 14 months after the Mumbai terror attacks in November 2008.

India and Pakistan have differing agendas for the Foreign Secretary-level talks on Thursday with New Delhi maintaining that its focus would be on terror and the other side cautioning that such a "narrow agenda" would not yield much progress.

Clearly giving the Indian perspective, Rao has said the focus of the talks would be on India's "core concerns" over cross-border terrorism.

Terming the proposal of talks from India as "another sincere attempt" to initiate dialogue with Pakistan, Rao said "we hope we can build, in a graduated manner, better communication and a serious and responsive dialogue to address issues of concern between our two countries."

However, In Beijing, Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi today said his country wants all bilateral issues, including Kashmir, to be discussed in Thursday talks.

He said much progress would not be made if India restricts the dialogue to a "narrow agenda" of terrorism.