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India is secretly constructing nuclear city in south: FO

10 February, 2017

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ISLAMABAD: Pakistan on Thursday claimed India is secretly constructing a nuclear city in the southern part of the country. "India is also secretly developing thermo nuclear weaponry," Foreign Office spokesman Nafees Zakaria said during a weekly briefing. He also informed that India had conducted nuclear submarine and inter-continental ballistic missile tests recently. He asserted that Pakistan is committed to maintaining peace in the region through it's peaceful neighborhood policy, that includes with India.

He urged the international community to take notice of this development and put a check on the rapid expansion made by India in conventional and nuclear weapons.

Zakaria affirmed India is involved in acts of terrorism in Pakistan and Islamabad has provided evidence to the UN regarding Indian interference.

India is also constantly violating the ceasefire at the LoC which has resulted in the loss of lives.

To a question regarding Indian surgical strikes after Uri incident, he said that Indian claims were merely a falsehood. The Pakistan Army had arranged a visit for international journalists who viewed the place where the Indian Army had claimed to have conducted the strikes.

He said that the Indian quest to isolate Pakistan had failed miserably. To another question, Zakaria replied saying that Pakistan itself is a victim of terror and the people of Pakistan and their state institutions have been the target of terrorism. Yet Indian belligerence continues to pose a threat to the peace in the region, which the international community should take note of it.

The FO spokesman said Pakistan has repeatedly sought details of probe into the deadly 2007 Samjhauta Express bombing, but India has not given a response so far.

He was also assured that the Trump administration is not taking any special steps regarding Pakistanis travelling to the US. The new US administration has clarified that visa restrictions do not apply to Pakistani citizens, the FO added that the US Embassy in Islamabad has also issued a detailed statement in this regard.

Zakaria also stated that the Kashmiris have rejected a draft bill by the 'sham' government that gives police AFSPA-like powers, and which in turn will convert Jammu and Kashmir into a more lawless state. According to the Association of Parents of Disappeared Persons (APDP), 8,000 Kashmiris have gone missing in Indian-held Kashmir.

In the Indian Home Minister Rajnath Singh's statement, it was asserted that a referendum must be conducted in Pakistan-held Kashmir to see whether its citizens wanted to remain under Pakistani rule or wanted to merge with India, the FO spokesman said that such remarks were in violation of the UN charter.

Russia also invited Pakistan to take part in the conference on Afghanistan in mid-February in Moscow. Pakistan is likely to attend the conference which is different initiative from the previous meeting between Pakistan, Russia, and China in Moscow in December, 2016.

According to Zakaria, the next Heart of Asia Conference is likely to be held in March this year in Baku, Azerbaijan. He also affirmed that Pakistan wanted peace and stability in Afghanistan.

"We strongly condemn the killing of 6 innocent Afghan Red Cross workers. We condole and give our sympathies to the bereaved families," he said. The Russian energy minister was in Islamabad to discuss issues related to the North-South Gas pipeline project and Pakistan and Russia were cooperating in defence and in other fields.

Pakistan has also taken up the issue of the diverting of a PIA flight in Britain.

On deportation reports of 39,000 Pakistanis from Saudi Arabia, Zakaria only said that they were media reports and that Pakistanis are playing a significant role in the development of the Middle East.

Finally, Pakistan is hosting 13th ECO Summit according to schedule on 1st March and most of the countries have confirmed their participation in the Summit.

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