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India is mother of terrorism in South Asia: Maleeha Lodhi

25 September, 2017

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UNITED NATIONS: Pakistan has categorically rejected India's allegations about Islamabad's involvement in terrorist acts, citing instances of New Delhi's sponsorship of terrorism and aggression against all neighbours making it the 'mother of terrorism' in South Asia.

"India has considerable experience in the state sponsorship of terrorism in our region," Ambassador Lodhi, Pakistan's permanent representative to the UN, told the UN General Assembly, while responding to Indian External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj's speech in which she called Pakistan 'the pre-eminent export factory for terror'.

In a hard-hitting statement made in exercise of her right of reply, the Pakistani envoy described Swaraj's statement earlier in the day as an 'orgy of slander' against her country. "Her comments towards my country betray the hostility that the Indian leadership has towards Pakistan - hostility we have endured for 70 years."

Ambassador Lodhi said India had "sponsored and perpetrated terrorism and aggression against all its neighbours; creating terrorist groups; destabilizing and blockading neighbours to do its strategic bidding and sponsoring subversion, sabotage and terrorism in various parts of Pakistan."

"India's proclivity to violence is also no secret. In the 70 years since its independence India has been engaged in at least over a dozen instances of the use of force and continues to face 17 insurgencies in its own land. It has fought a war with or in each of its neighbours," she said.

Jammu and Kashmir was not part of India but a disputed territory and the Indian occupation was illegal, she told the 193-member assembly. She called for the implementation of relevant Security Council resolutions and for a UN special envoy to be appointed to ensure India's adherence to its legal obligations, adding that Pakistan was committed to openness and dialogue with India so long as it ended its campaign of subversion.

The UN Security Council had, in over a dozen resolutions, decided that the dispute must be resolved by enabling the people of Jammu and Kashmir to determine their own destiny through a UN-supervised plebiscite, the Pakistani envoy said. India had accepted these UN resolutions, but avoided implementing them through obfuscation, diversion, deceit and aggression, she added.

Rejecting the Indian minister's claim that UN Security Council resolutions had been 'overtaken', she said, "Law has no expiry date. Morality has no sell-by date." "India's posture is that of the predator. It cannot escape its legal and moral obligation to abide by the resolutions of the Security Council," she added.

India, she said, was now also refusing a bilateral dialogue with Pakistan, either composite or comprehensive. "Violence emanates, first and foremost, from India's occupation and brutal suppression of the Kashmiri people," she pointed out.

Ambassador Lodhi also urged the UN to take steps to investigate India's ongoing and massive violations of human rights in Kashmir, end the impunity enjoyed by India's security forces, lift the draconian emergency laws and punish those responsible for the war crimes and genocide in Kashmir.

"If the international community wishes to avoid a dangerous escalation between India and Pakistan, it must call on India to halt its provocations and aggressive actions," she said. "It must end the ceasefire violations along the Line of Control (LoC). It must halt its sponsorship of terrorist groups against Pakistan."

"The state terrorism which the Indian national security adviser (Ajit Doval) has boasted is being sponsored by India's spy agencies in Pakistan's Balochistan province in what he called a 'double squeeze' strategy," she said.

Pakistan, she added, has in its custody an intelligence officer, Commander Kulbhushan Jadhav, who has confessed to India's support to terrorist activities in Pakistan.

Deploring the Indian minister's attempt to denigrate Pakistan's founding father, Quaid-e-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah, the Pakistani envoy said, "All I can say about India's current political luminaries is that they belong to a political organisation that has the blood of thousands of Muslims of Gujarat on its hands." Today, she said, this so-called 'largest democracy' is the world's largest 'hypocrisy'. "It is ruled by a government in which a racist and fascist ideology is firmly embedded. The leadership of this government emanates from the RSS, the same extremist group which is accused of assassinating Mahatma Gandhi," ambassador Lodhi said. "It is a government which has appointed a fanatic as the chief minister of India's largest state whose rallying cry to his mobs was: 'If they kill one Hindu, we will kill 100 Muslims'."

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