The India & Pakistan ceasefire marked a milestone in secret talks that was brokered by the United Arab Emirates (UAE) that began about a month ago. This is according to a Bloomberg news report.
The United Arab Emirates already has a history of trade and diplomatic links with both India & Pakistan, has taken a more assertive international role under de facto ruler Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan.
Last month to the world’s surprise army chiefs from both India and Pakistan gave a rare joint commitment to respect a 2003 ceasefire agreement. About 24 hours after this a top UAE diplomat flew to New Delhi for a quick one-day visit.
The official UAE readout of the 26th February meeting gave few clues of what Foreign Minister Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed might have spoken with his Indian counterpart S. Jaishanka. It said ‘discussed all regional and international issues of common interest and exchanged views on them’.
As per the official newspaper quote on the ceasefire‘s just a beginning of a larger roadmap to forge a lasting peace between the neighboring countries, both have nuclear weapons and spar regularly over a decades-old territory dispute’.
The next step of the peace process will be reinstating envoys in New Delhi (India’s Capital) and Islamabad (Pakistan’s Capital) as both were pulled back in 2019.
After this step comes the tough part on resuming trade and a lasting resolution on Kashmir. Kashmir dispute was the cause of 3 wars between neighbors.
Pakistan Army Chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa asked India “to bury the past and move forward,” said this last week.
Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan called for a resolution on Kashmir just a day before the Pakistan Army Chief’s comments Imran described Kashmir Issue as “the one issue that holds us back”.
On 20th March India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi took to Twitter to wish his Pakistani PM get well after Imran was diagnosed with Covid-19. This is seen as a sign that relations between the countries are getting warmer.