After India’s request, Pakistan allows PM Modi’s flight to fly over its airspace to Bishkek

Islamabad: The Imran Khan-led Pakistan government on Monday allowed Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s flight to pass through its airspace to reach Kyrgyzstan for SCO meet.

This comes a day after India requested Pakistan to give special permission to PM Modi to fly over its airspace to Bishkek in Kyrgyzstan, where he is to attend the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) summit from June 13 to 14.

“We have requested Pakistan to let the PM’s plane fly over its airspace through one of the routes that has not been opened as yet. The PM has to attend the SCO meet on June 13 and June 14,” a senior government official was quoted as saying by news agency PTI.

The Imran Khan government had closed its airspace completely after India carried out air strikes targetting Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) terror camp in Pakistan’s Balakot on February 26. However, it later opened two routes of the total 11, a PTI report said.

Earlier in May, Pakistan had let then external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj fly directly through Pakistani airspace to attend the SCO Foreign Ministers’ meet in Bishkek.

An official told PTI that the Imran Khan government has approved in principle the Indian government’s request to let Prime Minister Modi’s aircraft fly over the Pakistani airspace to Bishkek.

“The Indian government will be conveyed about the decision once the procedural formalities are completed. The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) will also be directed to notify the airmen subsequently,” the official said, adding Pakistan was hopeful that India would respond to its offer for peace dialogue.

Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan is also attending the SCO summit this year, however, India has made it clear that it would not hold any talks with the country on the sidelines of the event.

Khan had last week wrote a letter to PM Modi calling for a dialogue between the two resolve all issues including Kashmir.

The official said Pakistan is still optimistic that India will accept its peace talks offer despite the fact both PMs were not meeting on the sidelines of the SCO summit.

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