External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar said that India was open to discussing outstanding matters with Pakistan “in an atmosphere free of terror and violence”. Jaishankar made the comments after meeting European Union Commissioner Christos Stylianides after the latter stated that the European Union reiterated its stand that India and Pakistan should resolve the Kashmir dispute through dialogue.

“A good meeting with EU Commissioner Christos Stylianides,” Jaishankar tweeted. “Discussed our perspectives on Afghanistan and Iran. Spoke of our expectations for better governance and more development in Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh.” Jaishankar said that India had underscored its “openness to discuss” matters bilaterally with Pakistan in an “atmosphere free of terror and violence”.

Tensions between India and Pakistan have escalated since India’s August 5 announcement that revoked Jammu and Kashmir’s special status. Islamabad, which has fought three wars with India for Kashmir since Independence, has not taken the decision well.

After the August 5 order, Pakistan downgraded diplomatic relations and suspended bilateral trade with India. Since then, the country has raised the Kashmir dispute at the United Nations Security Council and has said that it would take it up at the UN Human Rights Council and the International Court of Justice as well.

Last week, Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan had said that he would no longer attempt to deliberate with the Indian government on the Jammu and Kashmir dispute. He has also raised concerns about the threat of war between the two nuclear-armed countries on multiple occasions.

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