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Pakistan regrets Indian blame game on Pathankot attack

04 March, 2016

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ISLAMABAD: Foreign Office spokesperson Nafees Zakaria on Thursday regretted Indian blame game on the Pathankot terror attack.

At a weekly news briefing, he said cooperation and understanding are need of the hour to take the investigation into Pathankot incident forward. Commenting on Indian defence minister’s statement in which he accused Pakistan of being behind the attack, Zakaria said blame game on India’ part was unfortunate and unhelpful. He said a joint investigation team has been formed and modalities are being worked out for its visit to India. “Pakistan has denounced terrorism in all its forms and manifestations and believes all nations need to collaborate with each other to defeat this menace,” the FO spokesperson said.

Zakaria said Pakistan believes that all the nations need to cooperate with each other to defeat the menace of terrorism. Pakistan condemned the incident and Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif called to assure cooperation. Pakistan took all necessary measures on the basis of preliminary information provided by India regarding Pathankot terrorist attack. To a question, the spokesperson said Pakistan and India were working on the dates for foreign secretary-level talks.

Responding to a question, the spokesperson said Pakistan’s nuclear arsenal was only meant to deter any aggression against its territorial integrity. “As a responsible nuclear state, Pakistan has invested in ensuring nuclear safety, nuclear security and robust command and control system,” he said, adding that Pakistan was desirous to become a member of Nuclear Supplier Group and has taken up this matter with the relevant countries. He said Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif will also attend the nuclear security summit in Washington later this month.

About the Pakistan-US strategic dialogue, the spokesperson said there were six areas in which Pakistan cooperated with the US. The comprehensive dialogue was aimed at enhancing relations in the fields of science and technology, education, trade and economy, in particular. Regarding NSG, he said Pakistan was against any discriminatory treatment to any country. Pakistan qualifies to be invited to join NSG, he said, adding that it was an energy-deficient country and needed assistance in this regard.

Adviser to the Prime Minister, Sartaj Aziz and Secretary of State Senator John Kerry, led their respective sides during strategic dialogue. The prime minister’s visit to the US in October last gave fresh impetus and direction to the multi-dimensional relationship between Pakistan and the US. The 5th and 6th rounds of Strategic Dialogue mechanism would be effectively used in taking the relationship to the next level in diverse fields, he maintained. The spirit behind the dialogue, particularly of the sixth round was encapsulated in the sentiments expressed by Senator John Kerry.

“Expanding and deepening our relationship has long been a personal commitment of mine. Kerry-Lugar-Berman Act was aimed at lasting cooperation between the US and Pakistan, between businesses and universities and citizens. The strategic dialogue is totally in keeping with this kind of broad-based partnership and designed to advance it.”

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