In an apparent blow to bilateral ties, India canceled peace talks with Pakistan after Islamabad met with Kashmiri separatists. Analyst Sarah Hees tells DW the period of euphoria following PM Modi’s inauguration is over.
The talks between the foreign secretaries of the two nuclear-armed South Asian countries had been set to take place on August 25 in the Pakistani capital of Islamabad but India announced it would not attend the talks after Pakistan’s High Commissioner in India, Abdul Basit, held talks with Kashmiri separatist leaders on August 18. The talks had been regarded as an important milestone in the bumpy Indo-Pakistani peace process as they would have prepared the meeting of the Prime Ministers of India and Pakistan scheduled during the UN General Assembly in September.
Sarah Hees, Resident Representative of the German foundation Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung in India, says in a DW interview that with tensions running high over cross-border violence and with Pakistani PM Nawaz Sharif being under immense political pressure from anti-government protesters, it’s possible that New Delhi might have been looking for an excuse to drop out of the peace talks at this point.
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