The Foreign Office on Saturday rejected Indian External Affairs Minister (EAM) Subrahmanyam Jaishankar’s comments accusing Pakistan of justifying terror as a policy and for the frail relations between the two countries.
In a statement, the Foreign Office said Pakistan “completely rejects these unwarranted and tendentious comments” and advised to reflect on its own egregious behaviour marked by illegal and unilateral actions in Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IIOJK) instead of blaming its neighbours for the current state of bilateral relations.
The FO’s statement comes in reply to Indian Minister Subrahmanyam Jaishankar’s remarks during a recent online think-tank event.
He had said that the Pakistani government justified using terrorism as a policy, making it very hard to conduct relations, according to a report by Indian news outlet The Print.
“We don’t have a normal visa relationship, they are very restrictive on that score. They have blocked connectivity between India and Afghanistan and from Afghanistan to India. Normal neighbours do visas and trade, they give you connectivity and most important they don’t practice terrorism. And I think until we address that problem, this challenge of how do you have a normal relationship with this very unique neighbour is a very troubling issue for our foreign policy,” the report quoted Jaishankar as saying.
The FO called out India for its “fabrications and baseless allegations against Pakistan”, adding that “Clearly, an acknowledged perpetrator of state-terrorism cannot masquerade as a ‘victim’ of terrorism.”
The statement recalled the various fake “encounters” and “cordon-and-search” operations carried out by India to to divert the attention of the international community from the its atrocities in the occupied valley, which it said reflected the “moral bankruptcy of the Indian leadership”.
It was further mentioned that “The so-called preachers of trade and connectivity should also tell the world as to who is blocking regional cooperation and the Saarc (South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation) process, with its next summit pending since 2016. Indian sophistry and obfuscation can neither hide hard facts, nor succeed in misleading the world community.”
The statement said it was the “RSS-BJP regime’s dangerous policies of ‘Hindutva’ and ‘Akhand Bharat'” that continued to victimise the people in occupied Kashmir and minorities elsewhere in India and “create problems with nearly all of India’s neighbours”.
“Obviously, ‘normal’ relations with its neighbours remain contingent upon India beginning to act normally,” the statement said.
In a separate statement, the Foreign Office categorically denied Armenian prime minister’s baseless and unwarranted comments, alleging involvement of Pakistani special forces alongside Azerbaijani army in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.
“We have seen the transcript of Armenian Prime Minister’s interview on 15 October with a Russian TV referring to some unsubstantiated reports alleging involvement of Pakistani special forces alongside Azerbaijani army in the ongoing conflict,” the statement read.
“We categorically reject these baseless and unwarranted comments by the Armenian Prime Minister. President Ilham Aliyev of Azerbaijan has also clarified his stance on the matter stating that Azerbaijani forces are strong enough to defend their homeland and do not need the help of foreign forces.”
“Pakistan will continue to stand by the brotherly nation of Azerbaijan and support its right of self-defence against any aggression,” the statement concluded.