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"Kashmir issue" crops up in new Pak PM's speech in Parliament

Kashmir issue crops up in new Pak PMs speech in Parliament

New Delhi: It seems Pakistan's foreign policy never looks beyond Kashmir.

It is all the more so, after 70-year-old Shehbaz Sharif took up the slack of a crisis-ridden nation from outgoing Imran Khan on Monday.

Hours after swearing in as PM, he harped on Kashmir urging his Indian counterpart PM Modi to address the "issue".

However, there emerged a seemingly positive vibe that addressing the issue, reportedly, could help two countries focus on tackling their poverty and unemployment.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi wouldn't wait to congratulate the new Prime Minister on his election saying that India desired peace and stability in a region free of terrorism.

Modi also tweeted that both nations could focus on development challenges and ensure the well-being and prosperity of people.

Ending days of murky drama over no-trust vote, the Pakistan parliament on Monday elected Shehbaz Sharif as 23 rd Prime Minister of the country.

The younger brother of former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif was the only candidate left in the race after former Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi withdrew.

Senate chairman Sadiq Sanjrani presided over the swearing-in ceremony in the absence of President Arif Alvi from "sick leave".

Sharif secured 174 votes in the House of 342, where a winning candidate should ensure the support of 172 lawmakers.

After assuming power, Shehbaz told the House that Pakistan wanted good ties with India but durable peace was not possible until the Kashmir dispute was resolved.

Modi hoped in his message the smooth power transition would strengthen and cement people's belief in Pakistan's democracy.

Eliciting comments from top sources the Indian Express reported that the regime change could offer a "diplomatic opening".

The report further said that Shehbaz, former chief minister of Pakistan's Punjab province, was known to be close to the Pakistan Army.

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