India, Pak hold 'cordial' meet | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, March 15, 2019 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, March 15, 2019

VISA-FREE CORRIDOR FOR PILGRIMS

India, Pak hold 'cordial' meet

Pakistan and India held "very positive" talks yesterday, as the arch-rivals sat down to discuss a visa-free corridor for Sikh pilgrims just weeks after soaring tensions brought the two nuclear-armed powers to the brink of war.

Officials from the two countries met in Attari, India, to discuss the details of an agreement that would allow Indian Sikhs to visit a shrine to their religion's founder in eastern Pakistan.

"Both sides held detailed and constructive discussions on various aspects and provisions of the proposed agreement and agreed to work towards expeditiously operationalizing the Kartarpur Sahib Corridor," read the joint statement released by Pakistan's foreign ministry.

The two sides are set to meet again in the coming weeks to finalise the deal, the statement added.

"They were very welcoming, the whole meeting took place in a very positive environment," added Pakistan's foreign ministry spokesman Mohammad Faisal.

Upon completion of the corridor, Indian Sikhs will be able to access the site without first having to apply for a Pakistani visa. The arch-rivals have maintained an uneasy calm since tit-for-tat cross-border air raids across their disputed Kashmir frontier in February sparked fears of wider war, with each side claiming to have shot down a fighter jet from the other side.

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