ISLAMABAD: Taking strong exception to the unwarranted references against “a third country” in the recently issued Indo-US Joint Statement of Sep 6, 2018, Pakistan on Thursday rejected the allegations as “baseless” and termed it “inconsistent with the established diplomatic norms”.
“Accordingly we conveyed our position to the US side. The ministry is of the view that mentioning of a third country with unsubstantiated accusations in a formal outcome document is inconsistent with the established diplomatic norms,” said Foreign Office Spokesman Dr. Mohammad Faisal here in a media briefing with reference to US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s recent visit to India.
“What is more ironic is that many other thorny issues involving the third countries were avoided in the Joint Statement by the Indian side on the pretext of the same diplomatic practice. As you are aware, the Mumbai trial is ongoing in the Anti-Terrorism Court in Pakistan. The judicial process shall take its course,” he added.
The Foreign Office Spokesman said Pakistan expected the US to focus similarly, if not more, on the Indian state terrorism and the resulting humanitarian emergency in Indian Occupied Kashmir (IoK), where Indian atrocities have intensified.
“Indian occupation forces continue to kill innocent Kashmiris with impunity. Last month alone, more than 30 innocent Kashmiris were slaughtered in cold-blood. Hurriyat leaders continue to be incarcerated on trumped up charges. Foreign journalists are prevented from reporting on the situation in IoK. The recent suspension of Al Jazeera is just a case in point,” he maintained.
“It is also unsurprising to see zero mention of the continued ceasefire violations by India across the LoC/WB which posed a serious threat to peace and stability in the region,” he added.
To a question about a recent statement by Indian High Commissioner to Pakistan, while addressing a gathering in Calcutta, that the new government in Pakistan has opened a political window for India and filled India with certain hopes, the Spokesman said Pakistan had noted the statement of India High Commissioner.
“We are also saying since long that dialogue is the only way forward to settle all outstanding issues between Pakistan and India. We are officially waiting for a response from India on how they want to move forward,” he added.
The Spokesman said, “We have a consistent position on this. If you see the recent overtures, Prime Minister Modi called our Prime Minister and our Foreign Minister also received a letter from his Indian counterpart. We want to utilize the same window and see how we can move forward.”
To another question, he said, Secretary Pompeo’s visit to Islamabad last week was welcomed by Pakistan which offered an opportunity for both sides to have a very frank and candid conversation.
Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi has been invited to Washington DC by the Secretary of State, he said and added the continuation of engagement at the leadership level was important to take the relationship forward.