SCO Meet In Goa: With India's Hardline Stand On Terrorism, Jaishankar-Bhutto Meeting Seems Unlikely

Swarajya Staff

Apr 26, 2023, 01:59 PM | Updated 01:59 PM IST

EAM S Jaishankar
EAM S Jaishankar

The chances of a formal meeting between Foreign Minister Dr S Jaishankar and Pakistani counterpart Bilawal Bhutto Zardari during the latter's visit to India for a SCO meeting next month are unlikely, according to the report.

Jaishankar recently criticised the country while in Panama City with Foreign Minister Janaina Tewaney Mencomo at a joint press conference.

EAM Jaishankar said: "It is for us very difficult to engage with a neighbour who practices cross-border terrorism against us. We've always said that they have to deliver on the commitment not to encourage, sponsor and carry out cross-border terrorism. We continue to hope that one day we would reach that stage."

Terror attack, last week, killed five Indian Army soldiers close to the Poonch district in Jammu and Kashmir. 

According to the reports, the People’s Anti-Fascist Front (PAFF), a proxy group linked with the Pakistan-backed Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) claimed responsibility for the attack. But some reports also suggest involvement of another terror group, Lashkar-i-Taiyba.

Pakistan's Bhutto Zardari is set to attend the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) foreign ministers' conference in Goa, marking the first high-level visit from Pakistan in years.

The spokesperson of the Ministry of External Affairs declined to provide a clear answer when asked about Pakistan's request for a Foreign Minister bilateral meeting.

"We look forward to a successful meeting. It will not be appropriate to focus on participation by any one particular country," he said when asked about Pakistan's announcement.

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