Decision On Foreign Secretary Level Talks Today


New Delhi:  The decision on India-Pakistan foreign secretary level talks will be taken today, after National Security Adviser Ajit Doval returns from Paris, sources told NDTV.

The decision was deferred as the detention of Jaish chief Masood Azhar was reported in the Pakistan media but not officially confirmed, even to India.

Foreign minister Sushma Swaraj met Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday evening along with Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar. Mr Jaishankar is supposed to travel to Islamabad on Friday for talks, which has come under a cloud.

Foreign ministry spokesperson Vikas Swarup said, “We have not received official word on detention of Masood Azhar.”

A Pakistan minister, Mohammad Zubair, has told NDTV, “I cannot confirm that Masood Azhar has been detained… Jaish offices were raided and several men have been held.”

India has said that unless Pakistan takes strong against those responsible for the attack, the Foreign Secretary level talks could not go ahead at this time. However sources insist they are not linking the talks to Azhar’s detention.

Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif set up a committee of his top intelligence, army and government officers to investigate India’s allegations after Prime Minister Narendra Modi spoke to him last week, asking for prompt and decisive action on the basis of specific evidence.

Earlier on Wednesday, Pakistan said it had detained some members of Jaish-e-Mohammed in connection with the Pathankot attack.

A statement from Mr Sharif’s office said, “Based on the initial investigations in Pakistan, and the information provided, several individuals belonging to Jaish-e-Mohammed, have been apprehended. The offices of the organization are also being traced and sealed. Further investigations are underway.”