Replying to short duration discussion on ‘India’s foreign policy and engagement with strategic powers’in the Rajya Sabha today, she said India was talking to China not only on Doklam but on all issues and believed that only persistence, patience and diplomatic channels could lead to resolution of the present stand off.
The External Affairs Minister also sent out a clear message to Pakistan that terror and talks could not go together, while reiterating India’s desire for friendly relations with the neighbour. ‘’We say that you stop terror and we will begin talks,’’ Ms Swaraj said dismissing the Opposition charge that under the Modi Government relations with neighbouring countries had deteriorated.
She said the Opposition was asking for road map for ties with Pakistan, but the Modi government set the road map the very first day when he invited all SAARC nations to Delhi, and during a bilateral meeting with then prime minister Nawaz Sharif, it was decided to begin the Foreign Secretary level talks. She also referred to Mr Modi's visit to Lahore on Mr Sharif’s birthday and the decision during her visit to Islamabad for the Heart of Asia conference during which it was decided to start comprehensive dialogue.
She said the relations with Pakistan did not go wrong even after the Pathankot terror attack as the country did not deny it, but things went sour when Mr Nawaz Sharif glorified Burhan Wani. Ms Swaraj said that the day Pakistan stopped terror attack from against India, there would be no hitch in beginning talks. The External Affairs Minister also said that India was having very Good relations with other neighbours like Nepal, Bhutan, and Sri Lanka.
On the Opposition charge about Chinese influence in Sri lanka, she said all the major deals between the island nation and China happened during the Congress regime. She also categorically stated that while pursuing good relations with Israel, India would never give up the Palestinian cause. (UNI)