New Delhi: In comments that will come as a major embarrassment for Pakistan PM Imran Khan's government, Interior Minister Brigadier (Retd) Ijaz Ahmed Shah has admitted that Pakistan has failed to garner support from the international community on Kashmir adding that despite Islamabad’s efforts, the world “rather believes India".
“We say that they (India) has clamped curfew, that there is no medicine, but people (world) don’t believe us, and rather believe India," he said in response to a question on the situation in Kashmir in an interview to the local Hum News channel, PTI reported.
Shah’s remarks come after Imran Khan said that 58 countries had supported Pakistan over its stand on the Kashmir issue. They are also seen as significant against the backdrop of Pakistan trying to drum up support for the issue at various international fora.
Khan, in his 26 August address to the nation, said he will raise the Kashmir issue at every international forum, including at the UN General Assembly. This is something he repeated at a rally in Muzaffarabad on Friday while addressing a rally to show solidarity with the Kashmiri people. Khan is scheduled to address the UN on 27 September.
Tensions between India and Pakistan spiked after India abrogated provisions of Article 370 of the Constitution and ended the special status of Jammu and Kashmir on August 5, evoking strong reaction from a livid Pakistan.
India has categorically said that the scrapping of Article 370 was an internal matter.
Shah also said Pakistan had spent millions of rupees on proscribed groups like Jamaat- ud-Dawah (JuD) and should bring them into the mainstream. JuD is seen as a front for the Lashkar-e-Taiba terrorist group, which masterminded the Mumbai attack of 2008.
“We have spent millions of rupees on JuD. We need to demotivate the members of the proscribed organisation and bring them into the mainstream," he said.
Shah, who is considered as a powerful minister and is both close to Prime Minister Khan and the military establishment, said the action has already started against such groups.
Mumbai terror attack mastermind and chief of the banned JuD Hafiz Saeed is facing cases in the courts as part of the government’s decision to “control all jihadis" under the National Action Plan, he said.