India says talks with Pakistan still on

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In a dramatic U-turn ,Modi government  said the stalled dialogue process with Pakistan was not suspended and the visit of Pakistan’s Joint Investigation Team (JIT) to probe the Pathankot airbase attack was “very constructive”.

External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Vikas Swarup said conversations between the two neighbours were continuing at various levels, including at the prime ministerial-level.

India’s statement comes a month after Pakistan’s High Commissioner in New Delhi Abdul Basit had said talks between the two sides was seemingly suspended and Indian high commissioner  also suggested the dialogue process was blocked  .

“The JIT visit was held in a very constructive and cooperative environment to investigate the Pathankot airbase attack,”  Vikas Swarup said at his weekly media briefing in New Delhi

On the issue of sending Indian investigators involving NIA team  to Pakistan  for  questioning  Jaish -e- Mohammad terrorists,Swaroop said “The Pathankot attack investigations are ongoing in both countries.  Islamabad has  expressed its willingness to host an Indian investigative team and it will be considered “at an appropriate time”.

He also said that India welcomes any move against terrorism. “We welcome cooperation to combat terrorism in all its forms.”

“Obviously, after the Pathankot terror attack, the focus of conversations was on investigation of that particular attack. However, other aspects of the relationship have also been discussed. I have made statements and so has my Pakistani counterpart. This should give you clarity that the dialogue process has not been suspended,” Swarup said.

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