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PM Sharif Invites Obama to Pakistan, Asks to Raise Kashmir Issue with India

Within hours after US President Barack Obama declared he will be visiting India and will be the chief guest at the Republic day celebration, Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif recalled an invitation that he extended to the President a year ago, on Saturday.

While recalling the invitation, Sharif said that the people in Pakistan are likely to welcome the US President in the near future. After confirming his visit to India, Obama has reportedly contacted Pakistan PM on phone, where he said that they value the ties with Islamabad.

As per an official statement, "The President also assured the Prime Minister that he would undertake a visit to Pakistan at an early date, as soon as the situation normalises in the country."

Meanwhile, Sharif asked Obama to hold talks on Kashmir issue with India. According to a statement from the Pakistan Prime Minister’s Office on the discussions between the two leaders, Sharif has reportedly said that an early resolution of the Kashmir issue would bring enduring peace, stability and economic cooperation to the south Asian region.

However, according to reports, the PM Sharif said his country "remains open to the resumption of bilateral dialogue, the onus is on India to create a conducive environment in this regard." Amid, as per a statement, "President Obama expressed his understanding for our position."

The duo has reportedly brought in the topic of the need to improve Pakistan’s relationship with Afghanistan. Meanwhile, the statement said that Obama appreciated Sharif’s efforts, calling it pivotal for the peace and stability in the region.

Amid, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has invited the President to be the chief guest at the 66th Republic Day Parade this year. Obama has announced on Friday that he will be visiting India during the celebration of the 66th Republic Day. The visit is likely to bolster India-US bilateral strategic relationship.

According to a statement from India’s Ministry of External Affairs, Obama will be the first US president to visit India twice during his term of office. It said, "We look forward to this development which stems from the initiative of our Prime Minister (Narendra Modi) following their bilateral meeting in Washington."

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