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Sushma meets Rajnath, Pathankot among issues discussed: Sources

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External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj on Monday met Home Minister Rajnath Singh, amid the uncertainty over the Indo-Pak Foreign Secretary-level talks scheduled in Islamabad on January 15 after the Pathankot terror attack.

According to official sources, the 20-minute one-on-one meeting was held on a request of Swaraj. However, offices of both Singh and Swaraj did not comment on the issues discussed between the two. Sources indicated that the recent terrorist attack in Pathankot, where seven security personnel were killed, might have figured in the meeting. All terror-related information and inputs about Pakistan- based terrorist groups are provided by the Home Ministry to the External Affairs Ministry whenever India-Pakistan meet to discuss bilateral issues.

In a clear message, India has linked the FS-level talks to Islamabad’s “prompt and decisive” action in the Pathankot terror attack for which it has provided “actionable intelligence”. In a pre-dawn attack, a group of heavily-armed Pakistani terrorists attacked the Air Force base in Pathankot on January 2. The process of resumption of talks was set in motion after a meeting between Prime Ministers of India and Pakistan in Paris on November 30 on the sidelines of Climate Change Conference.

The meet was followed by the NSAs of India and Pakistan meeting in Bangkok a week later following which the External Affairs Minister visited Pakistan to attend Heart of Asia Conference during which the two sides announced the resumption of talks under “Bilateral Comprehensive Dialogue” process. In a surprise move, Prime Minister Narendra Modi also visited Lahore on December 25 to greet his Pakistani counterpart Nawaz Sharif on his birthday in person.

PTI

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