New Delhi: Pakistan foreign minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi on Tuesday said Islamabad will continue to raise the Indian government’s abrogation of Kashmir’s special status at international fora, but added his government was willing to end confrontation over the issue.
A report in Pakistan’s Dawn newspaper on Tuesday quoted Qureshi as saying that “Indian aggression and hegemonic designs are a threat to regional peace and security and need to be taken seriously."
Pakistan does not want to escalate the situation and remains ready for ending confrontation, Qureshi was quoted as saying at a seminar on “Annexation of Occupied Kashmir by Modi’s India: Challenges and Responses" organised by the Senate Committee on Foreign Affairs.
Tensions between India and Pakistan have risen after New Delhi abrogated the special status accorded to Kashmir under the Indian constitution earlier this month. India also bifurcated the state, carving out two union territories - Kashmir and Ladakh. The move does away with state’s disputed status and has angered Pakistan that claims the entire region as part of its territory.
“Pakistan will go to every forum to ensure that Indian atrocities in IOK (the part of Kashmir under Indian administration) are halted and the dispute is resolved in line with the aspiration of the Kashmiris and the UNSC resolutions," Qureshi said according the report. He called on the international community to play its role to prevent tensions over Kashmir, which he described as a nuclear flashpoint, from aggravating, the report said.
Silence on the issue was not an option, the foreign minister added.
Separately, Pakistan’s permanent representative to the UN Maleeha Lodhi met Maria Fernanda Espinosa, president of UN General Assembly. “Met Maria Fernanda Espinosa, President of UN General Assembly & briefed her in detail about the grave situation in occupied Kashmir where the continuing curfew & lockdown is exacerbating the suffering of the Kashmiri people. UN should live up to its obligations on IOK," Lodhi said in a Twitter post on Tuesday.
Meanwhile, news reports said Imran Khan had spoken to Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman on telephone on the Kashmir issue. This was Khan’s second conversation with the crown prince, the first having taken place on 7 August.
In an address to Pakistan on Monday, Khan pledged to raise the Kashmir issue at every international forum, including at the UN General Assembly which he is scheduled to address on 27 September.
Also read: At UNSC, China and Pakistan fail to censure India over Article 370