Responding to the Indian Air Force chief’s recent statement about India’s readiness for a “two-front war” with China and Pakistan, Foreign Office spokesman Zahid Hafeez said at a press briefing here on Friday that such provocative statements were a true reflection of the RSS-BJP mindset, a dangerous mix of extremist ideology and hegemonic designs.
“It is ironic that certain senior Indian political and military leaders continue to make a career out of issuing provocative statements against Pakistan at the cost of putting regional peace and security as well as India’s own security at risk,” he remarked.
The spokesman said that while making such braggadocio, the Indian Air Force chief must not forget India’s defence limitations, so embarrassingly exposed to the world, first during its misadventure in Balakot and more recently in Ladakh.
“India must not underestimate the resolve of Pakistani nation and the preparedness of our armed forces against any ill-conceived misadventure by India,” he added.
About the China-India tension, Mr Hafeez said India’s belligerent posture and expansionist policies were imperiling regional peace and stability. “We have closely observed border face-off between China and India. We believe disputes in the region should be resolved through peaceful means and through agreed mechanisms rather than resorting to unilateral, illegal and coercive measures,” he noted.
Answering a question about an article published in an independent US-based Foreign Policy Magazine endorsing Pakistan’s position that India is a state sponsor of terrorism, he said Pakistan had been consistently sensitising the international community regarding India’s involvement in terrorism to destabilise Pakistan and the region.
“Recently, we have seen many international endorsements, which vindicate Pakistan’s consistent position that India is a state sponsor of terrorism,” he said, adding that the US magazine’s report further exposed the true face of India — the so-called largest democracy in the world.
“India’s belligerent posture and expansionist policies are imperiling regional peace and stability,” he said, adding that Pakistan had already shared with the international community incriminating evidence regarding Indian intelligence agency RAW’s involvement in terrorist activities in Pakistan.
“The international community must take immediate cognisance of India’s use of state-terrorism as a tool to destabilise the region,” he stressed.
In reply to a question about Kulbhushan Jadhav case, the FO spokesman said it was utterly surprising that India continued to repeat the questions that had already been answered. He pointed out that Pakistan had already provided two unimpeded and uninterrupted consular accesses to India and offered a third one.
He said it had also been clarified to India that only those lawyers could appear before courts in Pakistan who had the licence to practice law in this country, adding that this was in line with legal practice in different jurisdictions, including India.
“As for the demand for provision of relevant papers, it has been conveyed to the Indian side that a duly appointed lawyer can collect the relevant papers from the office of the Attorney General for Pakistan. It appears that India is actually afraid of the difficult questions which it will need to answer during the review and reconsideration process.
“Rather than trying to abuse the legal process, India would be well advised to act as a responsible state and cooperate with the Pakistani courts to give effect to the ICJ (International Court of Justice) judgement,” the FO spokesman said.
Published in Dawn, October 10th, 2020