Disappointed over India's reaction to US sale of F-16 jets to Pakistan: FO

Published: February 14, 2016
A file photo of F-16 fighter jet. PHOTO: REUTERS

A file photo of F-16 fighter jet. PHOTO: REUTERS

Pakistan on Sunday expressed surprise and disappointment over Indian government’s reaction to a United States’ announcement notifying the sale of eight F-16 fighter jets to Islamabad.

“We are surprised and disappointed at the Indian government’s reaction. Their army and arsenal stock is much larger and they are the largest importer of defence equipment,” Foreign Office spokesperson Qazi Khalilullah said in response to media queries about recent Indian anguish over the announcement.

US envoy summoned: India outraged at sale of F-16 jets to Pakistan

The spokesperson went on to say that Islamabad and Washington closely cooperate in counter-terrorism. “US spokesperson clearly announced that the sale is to enhance precision strike capability,” he said.

Pakistan’s response comes a day after India’s Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar summoned US Ambassador Richard Verma in New Delhi to convey the country’s ‘displeasure’ over the possible sale in a meeting which reportedly lasted for about 45 minutes.

Earlier in the day, the spokesperson for India’s external affairs ministry had also took to Twitter to express disappointment over the move. “We are disappointed at the decision of the Obama Administration to notify the sale of F-16 aircraft to Pakistan,” Vikas Swarup posted on the microblogging website.

Meanwhile, New Delhi’s outrage is unlikely to change the decision to sell F-16s to Pakistan. The planned sale is to be subsidised through the US State Department’s foreign military sales programme announced last year which aims to reward Pakistan for its counter-terror efforts.

US expresses concern over security of Pakistan’s nuclear stockpile

The US is expected to cover at least 46% of the deal which is valued at $699 million. In addition to eight F-16s, the deal also includes the sale of radars and other military equipment.

Analysts believe the proposed sale will improve Pakistan’s capability to meet current and future security threats. PAF currently operates 76 F-16 fighters. The latest sale, if it goes through, will boost the fleet to 84 aircraft.

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Reader Comments (14)

  • Fahim
    Feb 14, 2016 - 3:28PM

    I am disappointed from FO that from whom they are getting disappointed. I think FO doesn’t know the difference between disappointment and expected response of a country who is lead by a murderer named ModiRecommend

  • Aftab Ali
    Feb 14, 2016 - 4:06PM

    Indians just think about Pakistan 24/7 like a father in law thinks about his son in lawRecommend

  • roadkashehzada
    Feb 14, 2016 - 4:20PM

    issuing a statement isnt enough. summon indian ambassador and ask them wht they mean and want? why conflicting signals?
    apparently the region is realigning. UAE is getting close to india and its not without considering chinese investment in gawader. pakistan should be proactive be assertive and stop belittling ourselves.Recommend

  • NHA
    Feb 14, 2016 - 5:03PM

    Why is FO spoke person surprised?. I am not. Are we so naive that this was not expected from India. Are our politicinas, diplomats, academia and civil society so simpletons that they are unable to comprehend and foresee India’s intentions, and reaction to any thing good happening or coming to Pakistan . This is frustrating.

    India is full time engaged in sabotage, derailment, vilification, propaganda, defamation and all sorts of negative activities against Pakistan.

    Build national capacity to thawrt this before it is too late.Recommend

  • Sanjay Sharma
    Feb 14, 2016 - 6:26PM

    It is indeed painful to see India objecting American proposal of selling F16. In my opinion, every country has its own judgment, wrong or right. If India is really worried on this sale, it should make arrangements to counter Pakistan by purchasing more fighter aircrafts. Or try to upgrade it’s own capabilities indigenously. All should bear it in mind, America, or any country in the world, always go by the simple rule – i.e. self interest. I have never seen Pakistan and China making noise over Indian preparedness in military terms. Instead, these two nations always changed course in their favour by taking drastic action. Crying in a jungle to have safe passage will not fetch any help from wolves. India has to work hard in every field to come out of its all problems.Recommend

  • Zubair
    Feb 14, 2016 - 6:58PM

    Next headline would read as “India summons Pakistan ambassador over it’s dissapointment over indian dissapointment” Recommend

  • Haji Atiya
    Feb 14, 2016 - 7:15PM

    Why does FO have to make a statement in the first place ?! Behaving like a supposed valentine gone bad !Recommend

  • curious2
    Feb 14, 2016 - 8:07PM

    India and Pakistan have both tried to get the USA to select a side for several decades – USA isn’t going to do that. USA has consistently encouraged negotiations/peace but has been willing to do business with both parties – selling weapons is a business not a political choice.Recommend

  • Kowtowing
    Feb 14, 2016 - 9:50PM

    Pakistanis are habitual of kowtowing to other nations, especially, the Arabs, Iranians, and the Western nations.
    The need is to develop self-respect and self-confidence.
    Lately, we have been let down by friendly countries, including UAE, which is envious or upset at the Gwadar seaport, which might reduce the importance of UAE ports, including Dubai. UAE is also upset along with Saudi Arabia for Pakistan not playing mercenary in Yemen and Syria. If we had obliged these countries, Iran would have been upset. However, Iran continues to build Chabahar seaport with India’s assistance as a competitor to Gwadar. We are trying to please both the Arabs and Iranians at the expense of your national interests, which is not new to Pakistan.Recommend

  • indian
    Feb 14, 2016 - 10:50PM

    @Aftab Ali:
    you people think about us all the time like father in law thinks of son in law that is why you were whining when there was a nuclear agreement between US and India. Recommend

  • Feb 14, 2016 - 11:22PM

    US wants to pull out its forces from Afghanistan and the security situation of Afghanistan is very unstable/dangerous….US is well known with the fact that terrorism in Pakistan is being sponsored via Afghanistan….plus US wants a healthy relationship between Pakistan and India….so this is why US is providing 8 F-16 vipers to Pakistan.Recommend

  • Waqar
    Feb 14, 2016 - 11:41PM

    Simply Shocking….Indians have recently signed a deal with France to buy 36 Rafale Fighter jets not for display in Air shows (but to use against Pakistan).


  • ghayyas
    Feb 15, 2016 - 4:11AM

    The Pakistani foreign office is living in a fool’s paradise.Recommend

  • curious2
    Feb 15, 2016 - 7:03AM

    USA offered some of the latest/greatest fighter bombers to India and they elected to go with France – now they tell USA that they shouldn’t sell fighters to Pakistan. I bet the American had a chuckle with that complaint.Recommend

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