Onus Is On Pak To Act Against Terror Groups, Says MEA

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New Delhi: Spokesperson for the External Affairs Ministry Vikas Swarup on Thursday issued a statement on Pakistan and the recent terror attacks on Army base in India’s border town of Uri, as well as Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s speech during the 71st session of the United Nations General Assembly.

Swarup said that the response to Sharif’s speech was ably given by India’s UN Secretary Eenam Gambhir and that the responsibility now lies with Pakistan to deal with terrorism against India growing on its soil. Allaying all fears of Sharif’s speech and his claims on the Kashmir issue getting support from world leaders, Swarup said no one in the past two days of the UNGA session have mentioned Kashmir issue, which in itself is an indication of Pakistan’s isolation.

Responding to a question on how Indian planned to counter Nawaz Sharif’s continued efforts to garner support for the Kashmir issue, Swarup said, “The onus is now squarely on Pakistan to act against terror groups, who find safe havens in Pakistan.” When asked by a reporter whether Prime Minister Narendra Modi will travel to Islamabad to attend the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) Summit, Swarup refused to give a yes, or no answer, saying, “Every question does not have a yes or no answer.”

Speaking about what Union External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj will be speaking about in her speech during the ongoing UNGA on September 26 and whether India will be presenting a dossier to prove Pakistan’s activities to promote terror in India’s border areas, he said, “We don’t need a dossier, whole world is aware of Pakistan’s role in promoting terror”.

Vikas Swarup added by saying that we will just have to wait and watch what Swaraj is going to talk about. Asked about why India still insisted on having diplomatic relations with Pakistan, despite Gambhir calling the country a terror state, Swarup said that without dilpomatic relations, India would not have been able to summon Pakistan High Commissioner and confronted him about Pakistan’s involvement in Uri, Poonch and other incidents.

Responding to a question of what diplomatic levers did India have to squeeze Pakistan and make it realise that the path of terrorism will cost it dearly, Sawrup said that he would not go into the details of the same, in a public forum, adding,”Our actions speak for themselves and you can see our actions are already delivering result.” Besides that, he eschewed further comment on that.

Swarup also spoke about the Bill in the US Congress seeking to declare Pakistan a terrorist state. He said that Bill has been pushed by two very highly regarded US Congress members, adding that he was sure that the Bill will be treated with utmost seriousness. He also pointed out that US had earlier decided to substantially cut funding to Pakistan and it also tried to obstruct Pakistan’s attempts to buy F16 fighter jets.

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