The Ministry of External Affairs on Thursday said the national security advisors of India and Pakistan had held talks on December 26. “I agree that talks took place,” MEA spokesperson Raveesh Kumar told reporters at a press conference.
His statement came after media reports suggested that National Security Advisor Ajit Doval held met his Pakistani counterpart Nasser Khan Janjua in a “secret” meeting in Thailand on December 26.
“Our issue was eliminating terrorism from the region”, Kumar said. “We have said terror and talks cannot go together, but talks on terror can definitely go ahead. We, of course, raised the issue of cross-border terrorism in those discussions.”
The Doval-Janjua talks came just a day after Pakistan allowed former Indian Naval officer Kulbhushan Jadhav, who is currently in a jail in Islamabad, to meet his wife and mother. New Delhi had claimed that the two women were mistreated by Pakistani officials during the meeting.
On December 30, The Indian Express had reported that Jadhav’s meeting with his family was not raised during the discussions between Doval and Janjua. Instead, the daily said, it was a “pre-scheduled” meeting.