India, Pakistan Hold First Peace Talks Since 2008 Mumbai Attack

Posted June 23rd, 2011 at 8:10 am (UTC-5)
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Two of the top diplomats from India and Pakistan have restarted peace talks that stalled after the 2008 Mumbai terrorist attacks blamed on Pakistan-based Islamic militants.

India's Foreign Secretary Nirupama Rao and her Pakistani counterpart, Salman Bashir, met Thursday in Islamabad and plan to get together again on Friday to discuss a wide range of issues, including the contentious issue of the control of the disputed Kashmir region.

The four-year peace process between the nuclear-armed rivals collapsed after gunmen killed 166 people in the Mumbai attack.

India blamed the assault on Pakistani militants from the banned Lashkar-e-Taiba group, while Pakistan has acknowledged that at least part of the plot was hatched on its soil. The two countries have fought three wars since gaining independence from Britain in 1947.

The current meetings are expected to clear the path for ministerial-level meetings next month.

India says the talks should focus on terrorism and the need to overcome a “trust deficit” between the two countries. Pakistan insists that India should move beyond terrorism and focus on other issues, such as peace, security and the Kashmir dispute.