India-France nuclear deal will destabilise South Asia: FO | Pakistan Today

India-France nuclear deal will destabilise South Asia: FO

ISLAMABAD: Criticising the multi-billion nuclear agreement between France and India, Pakistan on Thursday said the deal, under which India would receive two nuclear reactors, would create mistrust and would have serious security implications in South Asia.
“We strongly believe that creating exceptions for any country is not only a step backwards in terms of promoting peaceful nuclear cooperation, but also has serious security implications at the regional and global levels,” Foreign Office Spokesman Abdul Basit said in his weekly press briefing.
“Pakistan must be treated at par with India in the field of civil nuclear cooperation,” he said. “In our considered view, country-specific exceptions are inherently counter-productive, for these inevitably result in mistrust and non-cooperation.”
“There is no tenable alternative to criteria-based approaches towards promoting international cooperation in issues like civilian use of nuclear energy,” he said.
However, Basit didn’t agree with a questioner that Pakistan-France relations were on the slide. “They are rather on the upward trajectory. President Sarkozy is planning to visit Pakistan next year and that will provide a good opportunity to take bilateral relations to new heights,” he said.On Pakistan’s position on the Fissile Material Cut-off Treaty (FMCT), Basit said Pakistan would never compromise on its legitimate security requirements.
He said, “Pakistan’s position on the issue is based on principles and keeping with our security interests.”
The spokesman said India would have to take more steps to cooperate with Pakistan in order to reach the final outcome of investigations into the Mumbai attacks.
“India needs to do more on its part by responding to Pakistan’s requests on the Mumbai trial, instead of doubting Islamabad’s intentions,” he said. Basit said Indian Home Secretary GK Pillai’s remarks on the Mumbai attack trial in Pakistan were misleading and Pakistan was seriously pursuing the trial.
“Pakistan is looking forward to resuming the dialogue process with India so that issues such as the plight of fishermen were addressed efficiently,” he said.
He also rejected the claim made by Indian Foreign Secretary that Kashmir was an integral part of India, saying the core dispute was awaiting resolution in accordance with the relevant UN Security Council resolutions. Answering repeated queries about his views on disclosures by WikiLeaks about Pakistan, Basit said the leaks pertained to official communications within the US government system; therefore, Pakistan was not in a position to confirm their veracity.
Basit said Pakistan and its leadership were fully mindful of national interests and there would never be any compromise.
The FO spokesman said there were laid down procedures and guidelines for meetings of government officials with foreign diplomats, but the Foreign Ministry could not issue any directions to politicians on how to conduct themselves.
To a question on the likelihood of a visit by the foreign minister to India, he said, “This is contingent upon agreement on the agenda between the two states.”



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