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Pak yet to decide on India's aid for flood-relief

By Rezaul H Laskar
August 14, 2010 15:40 IST
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Pakistan is yet to decide on the Indian government's offer of $5 million as aid for providing relief to victims of the country's worst floods, with diplomatic sources saying that the proposal is being considered by the Foreign Office.

External Affairs Minister S M Krishna had conveyed the offer of aid to his Pakistani counterpart Shah Mahmood Qureshi during a telephone conversation on Friday.

Krishna described the aid as a "gesture of solidarity with the people of Pakistan in their hour of need", an official statement issued by the Indian High Commission said.

However, a statement issued by Pakistan's Foreign Office on Friday evening made no mention of the aid offered by Krishna.

The statement only mentioned that Krishna had telephoned Qureshi and "conveyed deep sympathies on behalf of the government and the people of India on the devastation caused by floods in Pakistan".

Diplomatic sources told PTI that the Foreign Office had not rejected India's offer of aid outright and the proposal was being considered.

A decision is yet to be made on whether to accept the aid, they said.

The statement issued by Pakistan's Foreign Office also said Qureshi thanked Krishna for the telephone call and conveyed appreciation for the concerns over the floods in Pakistan.

Qureshi also conveyed appreciation for the messages of condolence from India on the tragic plane crash in the Margalla Hills that killed 152 people on July 28.

Krishna also conveyed greetings on the occasion of Pakistan's Independence Day tomorrow and Qureshi reciprocated the same for I-Day celebrated by India on August 15.

The unprecedented floods in Pakistan have killed nearly 1,700 people and affected over 14 million.

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Rezaul H Laskar in Islamabad
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