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India doublespeak is raising tension in the region: FO

19 November, 2016

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ISLAMABAD: Foreign Office Spokesman Nafees Zakaria has said that the Indian Defense Minister's statement is another manifestation of India's doublespeak and raising tension in the region.

He expressed these views in response to questions in the weekly media briefing here on Friday. Indian Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar had said while speaking at a book launch function last week, "we are actually giving away our strength in nuclear. Why do people say that India has "No First Use" (NFU) policy? Why should I bind myself?"

The spokesman said that Pakistan has long maintained that the ambiguous no-first use declaration is not verifiable and amounts to nothing. It cannot substitute for verifiable arms control and restraint measures as proposed in Pakistan's standing offer of Strategic Restraint Regime.

"Such statements from a person no less than the defence minister of a country who has repeatedly and constantly heightened tensions with her aggressive posturing, should be a matter of concern not just for the countries in this region but as a threat to global peace and stability," he said. "The signing of nuclear deals by some countries is a matter of concern as it is only reinforcing arrogance and belligerence with which India conducts itself in the region and beyond," Zakaria said, in an apparent reference to India's signing of a civilian nuclear accord with Japan recently.

He said that Hurriyat leaders Syed Ali Geelani, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and Yasin Malik have won a moral victory by refusing to yield and submit to oppression, made it clear to India that come what may we will be masters of our destiny. Kashmiris have shown to the world their deep thirst for freedom for which they are prepared to stake their lives, their livelihood and their education.

"We salute our brave Kashmiri brethren in Indian occupied Kashmir for the sacrifices for the movement of their right to self-determination. People of Pakistan from across the world remain committed to our whole-hearted support to them," he said. "Pakistan desires peace and stability in Afghanistan, which is why we will participate in the Heart of Asia Conference on Afghanistan."

He reiterated that Pakistan was committed to helping all peace initiatives for Afghanistan. "Peace in Afghanistan is in Pakistan's and the region's interest," Zakaria concluded.

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