Kashmiris should not lose hope: FM Qureshi

Says Pakistan has exposed India on every forum

Aamir Ilyas Rana/Khalid Mehmood February 05, 2021
Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi. PHOTO: RADIO PAKISTAN


Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi on Thursday said Kashmir was a state issue and was not limited to a political party or government even though each country had economic and trade interests.

“P5 [the permanent members of United Nations Security Council] understand the position of Pakistan taken on the Kashmir issue and Kashmiris should not lose hope as the entire nations stands by the oppressed people of India Occupied Jammu and Kashmir,” said the minister on Thursday in an exclusive interview to The Express Tribune.

Talking about political disputes between the opposition and the government, Qureshi maintained that the political parties might have differences but the nation was united on the issue of Kashmir.

“The opposition’s politics is based on lies and hypocrisy as it strived to do politics in Muzaffarabad,” he said, adding the country’s narrative on Kashmir should be clearly conveyed to the world that “Pakistan vows to Kashmiris that it will never leave them alone”.

The federal minister maintained the Kashmir issue was put up at the UN Security Council twice a year, while the demonstrations across the world against Indian occupation in IIOJK had been increased multiple times.

In response to a question, Qureshi said the country’s relations with Russia didn’t intend to join any bloc of world power, while the newly-elected United States President Joe Biden was well aware of the intentions of Pakistan. “We wish a stable and lasting relationship with the US,” he added.

Qureshi also highlighted differences between opposition and the government and its resolution, saying the ruling party wished to reconcile with the opposition but it was unfortunate that the efforts were intercepted by the unknown elements.

“The government has scheduled a meeting of the House Business Advisory Committee, but some elements have tried to speculate the results of the meeting,” said the federal minister.

Asking a rhetorical question over the clashes of treasury and opposition benches in the National Assembly on Thursday, Qureshi said who could be held responsible for the attack on the speaker.

He accused the opposition parties for not taking any action against its lawmakers in the selection of Senate chairman and lauded the prime minister for expelling 20 lawmakers from Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf on allegations of violating party’s rules.

“The government has introduced a bill in the lower house of the Parliament to curb horse trading [in Senate elections], said the foreign minister lauding the efforts of the party.

The foreign minister further said the opposition was planning to horse trading Senate seats according to reports and to achieve the purpose leaders from Multan were being brought to Islamabad.

He also blamed India for interference in Balochistan as New Delhi’s relationships with its neighbour countries were not cordial.

“India has violated the Geneva Conventions and the Shimla Agreement,” he said, adding the world witnessed the case of Infolab as Pakistan raised the issue in the United Nations.

Pakistan has exposed India on every forum, while the incident of Balakot has spilled the beans on the intentions of the neighbouring country, he added.

Referring to the Afghanistan issue, Qureshi said the country’s narrative on the matter was clear that the issue of Afghan government and the Taliban could be resolved through dialogue.

He said an agreement with an agency including Federal Board of Investigation should be lauded if it aimed to bring back looted wealth of the country.

In response to a question, the foreign minister said the United Arab Emirates clarified that it would not establish relations with India at the expense of its ties with Pakistan.

“Pakistan has cordial relations with the UAE, OIC and Saudi Arabia,” he added.

He also clarified that Pakistan didn’t consider recognising Israel but the political drama was staged through rallies.



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