US in touch with India, Pak

The US is engaging with the Indian and Pakistani Governments on bilateral talks, which India called off while objecting to Pakistani envoy’s meeting with Kashmiri separatist leaders ahead of the dialogue.
“We are engaging with the Governments of both India and Pakistan directly through our embassies to talk about this issue, and again, would strongly support efforts by both countries to improve their bilateral relations,” State Department Deputy Spokesperson Marie Harf told reporters.
“So it’s really up to them to take steps to improve that relationship,” Harf added.
India had on Monday called off the talks between Foreign Secretaries of the two countries scheduled to be held in Islamabad on August 25, telling Pakistan bluntly to choose between dialogue and hobnobbing with the separatists.
India canceled the talks, raising strong objections to consultations held with separatist Hurriyat leaders by Pakistan High Commissioner Abdul Basit.
Pakistan described the cancellation of the talks as a “setback” to Indo-Pak ties and defended its consultations with Kashmiri separatists, saying it was a “long-standing practice” to hold such meetings prior to bilateral parleys. (PTI)


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