New Delhi: In a dramatic development, the National Security Advisors of India and Pakistan held a secret meeting in Bangkok today, discussing a range of issues including peace and security, terrorism and Jammu and Kashmir.
This meeting was agreed on by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Pakistani counterpart Nawaz Sharif when they met in Paris last week. Bangkok was chosen as it was a convenient location for both sides.
Sources said talks with Pakistan could lay the groundwork for PM Modi's visit to Pakistan next year for the SAARC summit.
A joint statement issued later said the Foreign Secretaries of both countries accompanied the NSAs.
The statement said the discussions "covered peace and security, terrorism, Jammu and Kashmir, other issues including tranquility over the Line of Control".
Sources said the discussions lasted for over four hours and that all subjects discussed have a security dimension, including Jammu and Kashmir.
Sources say PM Modi took initiative on the NSA meeting, which they say builds on the Ufa declaration on NSA-level dialogue.
Sources say the NSAs will meet again. "It was agreed to carry forward the constructive engagement," the statement, too, said.
Sources told NDTV Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj is all set to travel to Pakistan on Tuesday for an Afghan conference.
NSA-level talks were scheduled earlier this year when the two Prime Ministers had met for a bilateral summit in Russia's Ufa on the sidelines of a convention. But the meeting fell through at the last minute over a proposed meeting between Pakistan's then Security Advisor Sartaj Aziz and the Kashmiri separatists.
There were disagreements about the agenda of the meeting too - with Pakistan pushing for an "open agenda" and India maintaining the talks should be confined to terrorism.
Welcoming the talks, former chief minister of Jammu and Kashmir Omar Abdullah tweeted, "Paris was more than the officially termed "courtesy meeting". Good to see India & Pakistan resume the dialogue process."