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|March 4, 1999||
Sharief says talks with India were 'fruitful'
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharief of Pakistan has said his country is making progress in talks with India on Kashmir.
"The ice has started breaking. But we have a long way to go,'' Sharief said in an interview with Dhaka's Ittefaq newspaper published today.
Sharief, who left for home today, was in Bangladesh to attend this week's summit of an eight-nation Islamic economic bloc, known as the Developing Eight or D-8.
Kashmir, a territory claimed by both India and Pakistan, is the source of all conflicts in the region, Sharief said.
"Once we are able to resolve this dispute we will have little problems to establish peace and security in the region,'' the Pakistani leader said.
He said his talks last month with Indian prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee had been "very fruitful.''
"We have agreed to find out solution to all our problems, including that of Kashmir,'' Sharief said.
Vajpayee visited Pakistan riding a bus that opened the first passenger bus service between the two countries since their independence from British rulers in 1947. It was the first visit to Pakistan by an Indian head of state since the two arch enemies conducted nuclear weapons tests in May last year.
Sharief said officials of the two countries will meet to follow up his talks with the Indian prime minister.
Sharief did not specify any time-frame for the official-level meeting. Indian and Pakistani foreign secretaries and foreign ministers will have a chance to meet at a regional conference later this month in Sri Lanka.
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