Pakistan and India begin construction of 'corridor of peace'

Pakistan PM Imran Khan

It connects the twin Sikh shrines of Gurudwara Darbar Sahib Kartarpur in Pakistan and Dera Baba Nanak Sahib in India through a 4.5 km stretch of road.

The Kartarpur corridor along the India-Pakistan border is three kilometres away from Gurdaspur in Punjab. "Because, as I said, that unless and until Pakistan stops terrorist activities in India, there will be no dialogue and we will not participate in SAARC" Swaraj said.

The 26/11 attack case has entered into the 10th year but none of its seven suspects in Pakistan has been punished yet, showing that the case had never been in its priority list.

Khan, flanked by some of his federal ministers at the historic ceremony, addressed a large audience - which included diplomats, Indian ministers, and Sikhs - and stressed that "it would be insanity to think of a war between two countries with nuclear weapons".

'If those (France and Germany) countries managed to come together after waging such a big war in which so many people on both sides died, why can't we do the same?

The proposal received a fresh impetus in August when Pakistan's army chief, Qamar Javed Bajwa, told Indian minister Navjot Singh Sidhu, who was in Pakistan to attend the oath taking ceremony of Khan, Islamabad would be willing to open the corridor.

On Thursday, Mehbooba Mufti said her father and former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed had also envisioned a path of peace to "end the turmoil in Kashmir".

He reiterated that both the countries should break free from the shackles of the past, saying: "We can not move forward if we continue to live in the past instead of leaving it behind and learning from it".

Khan assured Sikh visitors from India that they will find their worship place and surrounding complex a completely developed structure equipped with all facilities and comforts when they visit Pakistan for the 550th birthday celebration of the Sikh guru.

Days before the ground-breaking ceremony, India complained to Pakistan about not allowing officials from its High Commission access to Indian pilgrims visiting Pakistan for the Guru Nanak birth anniversary. And of course, the United States would welcome efforts to increase people-to-people ties between India and Pakistan, State Department deputy spokesman Robert Palladino told reporters.

He said during his Malaysian visit, the government also invited investment for Pakistan citing huge potential in the country.

Responding to Pakistan's invitation, Modi's foreign minister, Sushma Swaraj rejected the idea of talks.

Pakistan denies supporting militants targeting Indian forces in Kashmir and in return accuses India of supporting separatist movements within Pakistan. According to him, the opening of Kartarpur corridor was one of the measures taken to improve bilateral ties.

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