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India, Pakistan Agree To Resume Official Talks

A candlelight vigil in Bangalore shortly after the Mumbai attacks in 2008
India and Pakistan have agreed to resume a wide-ranging formal dialogue, more than two years after the talks were broken off by India after the 2008 terrorist attack in the city of Mumbai.

The two governments announced they would begin the talks in a joint statement issued in New Delhi and Islamabad today.

The statement said the talks would focus on counterterrorism, humanitarian issues, peace and security, the disputed region of Kashmir, and other border issues.

Senior officials of the two countries will hold a series of meetings ahead of a visit to India by Pakistan's foreign minister in July.

India blamed the Mumbai attacks, which killed 166 people, on Pakistan-based militants and refused to resume talks, insisting that Islamabad do more to rein in militants.

Both nations have been under pressure from the United States to resolve contentious issues as Washington is concerned their rivalry complicates peace efforts in Afghanistan.

compiled from agency reports