Pakistan deeply disappointed by Indian rhetoric: FM
* Khar says statements from responsible Indian officials are hostile, recriminatory, accusatory, exceptionally military-minded
NEW YORK: Terming Indian statements in the wake of renewed Kashmir tensions “extremely contradictory”, Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar has said that Pakistan has been “deeply disappointed” by New Delhi’s rhetoric but remains committed to pursuing the peace process.
Contrasting with Indian “inflammatory” rhetoric, Pakistan, on the other hand conducted itself responsibly in the face of loss of its two soldiers in Indian attacks, she told CBS News in an interview.
The democratic government in Islamabad pursued peace and normalisation of trade with India at great political risk to it, she pointed out. “At the near end of our tenure, I am deeply disappointed. But we are as deeply committed to a peace process with India, as we are deeply disappointed. And we will continue to tread on that and we would encourage people from the other side to be careful.”
She said the Indian forces crossed the Line of Control and moved 400 metres inside Pakistan’s territory to kill its soldier. Pakistan, she said, looked into the India allegation of firing from the Pakistani side but found no evidence and, therefore, proposed a tripartite investigation involving UN-administered inquiry.
“At the same time, the type of statements that came in from the Indian side were nothing less than highly inflammatory, it was upping the ante, typical hostile narrative mode that these two countries have done for the last 60 years – very disappointing.”
Pakistan, she emphasised, conducted itself responsibly. “We had responsible people, talking about a proportionate response being given.”
Unfortunately, she added, the statements that emanated from “very responsible Indian people” were “hostile, recriminatory, accusatory and exceptionally military-minded.”
“It seems it has become a domestic politics issue (in India).” The hostility between the two nations hurts more than just their economies. Pakistan’s foreign policy is not which is hostile to India, the foreign minister said. “This hostility that we have had for the last 60 years has held the entire region back. It is has held progress on SAARC back. “
“It’s almost crazy - the level of rhetoric is un-understandable and preposterous and we hope better sense will prevail and we hope that the maturity that we have demonstrated in the last four years will come back and open our door again,” she said.
“I am very proud of the way Pakistan has handled this. I am very proud of how our media has handled it. I am even more proud on how our political leadership has handled to it because I think what they have shown is their deep abiding commitment to a peace process with India, to normalising relations with India.”
Meanwhile, Hina Khar termed the continued US drone attacks in the Tribal Areas counter-productive, as they make the fight against terror appear as America’s war enforced on Pakistan.
The foreign minister noted that the drone attacks give an ideological space to violent people and cause civilian casualties.
“They have no legality, they are completely unlawful, and we also believe on top of everything else, they are counter-productive,” she said when asked about the drone strikes that the United States says it carries out against suspected militant targets on the Pakistani side of the Afghan border. app