Islamabad/Srinagar: Pakistan Prime Minister's Advisor on National Security and Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz said on Thursday that he will visit India on August 23 for talks with his counterpart. "Yes, I can confirm it that I will be going to India on (August) 23rd for talks," he told reporters here.
India had proposed August 23-24 for the meeting between National Security Advisor Ajit Doval and Aziz in New Delhi.
The External Affairs Ministry on Thursday said that there was no official confirmation received yet. "No official confirmation from Pakistan has been received yet regarding dates for the talks," says Ministry of External Affairs.
Aziz said the decision was taken after consultations. Officials said that the decision to attend the meeting was taken after the final nod by Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif who returned last night from his three-day visit to Belarus.
The decision to hold NSA-level talks was taken when the prime ministers of the two countries met in Ufa, Russia last month on the sidelines of SCO summit. Last week, Aziz had said that Pakistan is preparing the agenda for talks.
A Foreign Office official had said that Pakistan is aware of India's agenda to highlight the issue of terrorism and planning is being done to counter it.
The talks between NSAs of the two countries come in the backdrop of simmering tensions following two terror attacks in Punjab and Jammu & Kashmir.
India has claimed arresting a Pakistani national for launching attack on Indian forces in Kashmir though Islamabad has denied that the attacks were perpetrated by terrorists who had infiltrated from its territory.
Earlier, the two countries had exchanged a war of words over a "spy" drone which Pakistan alleged was being used by India for aerial photography near the Line of Control (LoC), a claim dismissed by New Delhi.
Last week, Aziz had said that Pakistan wants a constructive, sustained, unconditional and result-oriented dialogue with India on all issues of mutual concern including the core issue of Kashmir.
Former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah gave a back-handed compliment to the BJP-led government at the Centre for continuing on the path of dialogue with Pakistan in the back drop of continued violence in the state, saying it was one U-turn he is "very glad" to see.
"'Violence and talks can't go together' BJP circa 2004-2014. This is one U turn I'm very glad to see," Omar wrote on microblogging site twitter.
Omar was apparently reacting to media reports that Pakistan has agreed to talks between the National Security Advisors of the two countries on August 23.
"Hope NSA talks lay strong foundation," the working president of National Conference said....