Negativity at Heart of Asia exposed India, says Pakistan

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Islamabad, Dec 8 (IANS) India’s “negativity” at the Heart of Asia conference last weekend “exposed” its claims of “commitment” to prospects of peace in Afghanistan, the Pakistan Foreign Office spokesperson said on Thursday.

Foreign Office spokesperson Nafees Zakaria, during the weekly press briefing, said that New Delhi “misused a platform meant for promoting peace and stability in the war-torn country.”

Zakaria said India’s “poor behaviour” with the Pakistani delegation during the ministerial conference in Amritsar ruined the atmosphere and proved that India was attempting to divert attention from its “atrocities” in Kashmir.

“Pakistan wants meaningful and result-oriented dialogue on all issues, including the problem of Kashmir with India,” Zakaria said.

While responding to questions, he said the dialogue should not be “for the sake of dialogue but result-oriented and sustainable”.

He said that despite a number of gestures by Pakistan, India remains “defiant and intransigent” to resumption of the dialogue.

Zakaria said Pakistan believes that the international community has a role in the resolution of the long-standing dispute.

He also welcomed US Vice President-elect Mike Pence’s statement regarding mediation on Kashmir.

Bilateral relations between Islamabad and New Delhi deteriorated in July following resurgence of unrest in Jammu and Kashmir and India placed the blame for the September 18 Uri military camp attack and continuing infiltration attempts on Pakistan.

Things turned worse with the rise in ceasefire violations at the border that have claimed dozens of lives in barely two months.

Zakaria also expressed regret at the statements made by Afghan President Ashraf Ghani during the conference. The focus of the conference was regional cooperation between Afghanistan and its neighbours in order to improve connectivity and tackle security threats.

Zakaria during the briefing said Pakistan’s policy on Afghanistan was clear. “Pakistan has allocated $ 500 million for development and education in Afghanistan.”

The spokesman alleged that Al Qaeda, the Haqqani Network, Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan and Jamaat-ul-Ahrar were operating in Afghanistan, and that “terrorist activities” were carried out in Pakistan from Afghan soil.

–IANS

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