NEW DELHI: India has rejected Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s suggestion of multilateral talks on the Kashmir dispute, insisting the matter must be resolved bilaterally through talks between Islamabad and New Delhi.
According to India media report, Indian Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) Spokesperson Gopal Baglay said ashmir issue has a “prominent dimension of cross-border terrorism” that needs to be stopped by “those who are perpetuating it.
Erdogan had suggested that the two countries needed to ‘strengthen multilateral dialogue’ in an attempt to find a solution to the Kashmir issue.
Baglay said that India’s case essentially was that Kashmir is an issue of terrorism that dogged us for 40 years, cross-border terrorism and state-sponsored terror.
“As far as the issue is concerned, we are ready to address any issue between India and Pakistan bilaterally through peaceful means as has been stipulated in the Simla Agreement and Lahore Declaration.”
The MEA spokesperson said the Turkish president and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi also held lengthy discussions on terrorism this week during Erdogan’s two-day visit to India.
Both parties agreed that there was no justification for terrorism, and urged all countries to disrupt terrorist networks and financing and “stop cross-border movements of terrorists,” Balgay said.
The Turkish president’s offer was, however, welcomed by Hurriyet leaders in India-held Kashmir.
Hurriyet Forum Chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq observed that the Turkish president “is well aware of how the Kashmir dispute is the main source of tension between the two nations.”