Border skirmishes: Pakistan offers to de-escalate tension with India

Published: October 20, 2014
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A file photo of a gate at the crossing of the Line of Control (LOC). PHOTO: REUTERS

A file photo of a gate at the crossing of the Line of Control (LOC). PHOTO: REUTERS

A file photo of a gate at the crossing of the Line of Control (LOC). PHOTO: REUTERS A file photo of rangers patrolling the border. PHOTO: AFP
ISLAMABAD: 

Pakistan has expressed its willingness for early restoration of ‘peace and tranquility’ along the Line of Control (LoC) and Working Boundary with India, as the two countries on Sunday again traded fire after a two-day hiatus.

As part of diplomatic efforts to defuse the situation, Prime Minister’s Adviser on National Security and Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz spoke to UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, according to a statement issued by the foreign ministry.

Aziz briefed the UN chief on the “frequency and intensity of unprovoked and indiscriminate” firing along the LoC and Working Boundary by Indian armed forces over the past few weeks. He underlined the need for early restoration of a ceasefire in the disputed territory.

Over a dozen Pakistani civilians have been killed, while many other injured since the clashes erupted between the two nuclear armed-neighbours on October 2. Both countries accuse each other for triggering the latest hostilities.

Aziz said Pakistan was fully united and determined to thwart any aggression, and had responded to India’s provocations with utmost restraint and responsibility. “India should be advised to adopt a mature and reasonable approach, and refrain its armed forces from acting irrationally,” he was quoted as saying in the foreign ministry statement.

The prime minister’s adviser said there must also be a way forward for resolving outstanding disputes, including the core issue of Jammu and Kashmir, in the interest of durable peace in the region.

He said peaceful settlement of disputes was a cardinal principle of the UN Charter to which Pakistan was deeply committed. “However, progress required cooperation of both sides. Rejecting bilateral dialogue and denying international engagement and legitimacy were unhelpful and counter-productive,” he emphasised. Aziz also underlined the important role of the United Nations to help address the situation and prevent further escalation.

Appreciating the work of the United Nations Military Observer Group in India and Pakistan (UNMOGIP), Aziz noted that its role should be further strengthened to facilitate more effective monitoring and reporting of ceasefire violations.

The UN’s engagement would add to its credibility in managing crisis situations, he added. “The UN should not be inhibited by non-cooperation of one side.”

In his remarks, the UN chief expressed his concern over the escalation of violence along the LoC and deplored the loss of lives.  He emphasised the importance of both sides taking necessary steps to de-escalate the situation and resolve all outstanding issues through negotiations, the statement said.

While Aziz raised the issue with the UN chief, Indian forces again resorted to ‘unprovoked firing’ in Pukhlian sector on the Working Boundary near Sialkot.

Pakistan forces effectively responded to the Indian firing, says a statement issued by the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR). According to Rangers’ officials, a civilian, Muhammad Khan, resident of Janglora village in Bajwat sector, received minor injury due to firing by India’s Border Security Force.

Published in The Express Tribune, October 20th, 2014.

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Reader Comments (33)

  • vasan
    Oct 20, 2014 - 11:05AM

    Those who escalated the tension are offering to de-escalate. Cant digest the response for the escalation, is it??

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  • Azeem Mohammed
    Oct 20, 2014 - 11:22AM

    Stop sending terorists to india…or let it continue.Recommend

  • asim
    Oct 20, 2014 - 11:24AM

    Nawaz Shareef has become the biggest National security risk to Pakistan as he does not know how to give a strong response to India.Recommend

  • Jor El
    Oct 20, 2014 - 11:41AM

    “The UN’s engagement would add to its credibility in managing crisis situations, he added.”
    I ddnt know that the UN was looking for a certification of credibility.

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  • Sunil
    Oct 20, 2014 - 1:01PM

    No one believes Pakistani’s and no matter what you say the UN will not interfere, in the end we as Indians can out do you in every way. If you want a war just start it and we will finish it, if you want to use nuclear weapons we will make sure there is no Pakistan. We dare you to try and then you will see how we deal with you.

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  • Gp65
    Oct 20, 2014 - 1:05PM

    Sartaj Aziz needs to speak to Raheel Sharif if he wants de-escalation. As long as Pakistan does not stop its adventurism, the response from India will not change. Calling Ban Ki Moon repeatedly will do little to change the situation.

    @Asim, it is the army and not the PM who is in charge of Pakistan’s security policies and foreign policies specially with regards to India, USA and Afghanistan. Any blame therefore should be directed to the correct quarters.

    @Jor El: even if it needed to prove its credibility then Syria, Iraq, Libya, Palestine, Israel, Ukraine, Russia are the platforms to do so.

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  • chandran
    Oct 20, 2014 - 1:17PM

    Both side of the civilian governments and respectively Pakistan National Assembly
    and Indian Parliament Passed their own resolution over Kashmir and we should see
    as stated position of both side of the people and give respect to that. What else
    we can talk about Kashmir. Any change in the position then pass another
    resolution in the respective parliaments and convey that to each other country.
    that’s all we can do. Now we can concentrate on some other issue since we are
    neighbor

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  • Old Ravian
    Oct 20, 2014 - 1:44PM

    A very sensible move from Pakistan. While each side accuses the other of escalation in tension, only a neutral body can decide who is at fault.

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  • Professor
    Oct 20, 2014 - 1:47PM

    The international community knows about the games Pakistan plays. They don’t care when Pakistan complains. Truth is a rare commodity in Pakistan and everybody knows it.

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  • jay1980
    Oct 20, 2014 - 1:54PM

    @asim: strong responses are given by nation who stand on their own feet, Pakistan is crawling right now.

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  • Sana Azhar
    Oct 20, 2014 - 1:58PM

    @Jor El: Absolutely. It is part of UN’s functions.

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  • Rishabh Jain
    Oct 20, 2014 - 2:00PM

    I do not agree that this a thing for trumping their egos. If Pakistan stops firing, well, that is awesome and I am happy they stopped firing. Civilians on both sides were suffering and any effort to de-escalate tensions is more than welcome.

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  • anshul
    Oct 20, 2014 - 2:03PM

    Actually pakistan and UN (i.e. libiya, syria, iraq, palestine) are in same situation no one listen to them. Moon and Aziz have lots of free time can write and reply everyday.

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  • AVMPolpot
    Oct 20, 2014 - 2:23PM

    Sartaz Azizs Phone Bill
    +++++++++++++++++
    Is attracting attention at IMF.

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  • Jor El
    Oct 20, 2014 - 2:58PM

    @Sana Azhar: Half-knowledge of the UN’s functions doesn’t help darling. Under Chapter VI, the UN may offer advice/recommendations if both parties agree for the same.

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  • Gp65
    Oct 20, 2014 - 3:25PM

    @Rishabh Jain:
    No one from India is trumpeting. If Pakistan stops firing, there would be no reason for India to respond. However what Pakistan wants is resoration of status quo it had with Congress wherein it could.start firing and then by implicitly threatening escalation to a nuclear war and also threatening to internationalise the issue – India is the one who would sue for peace. The NDA government has decided to call their bluff and made it clear that if Pakistan starts firing, it will give a disproportionate response and firing will only stop when Pakistan stops firing. It is better to establish groundrules once and for all which is much better for civilians on both sides, rather han have a replay every few months as has been the case.

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  • S K Chadha
    Oct 20, 2014 - 4:09PM

    It appears that the cost of escalation is becoming unaffordable?

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  • Amanullah Khan
    Oct 20, 2014 - 6:25PM

    Our Govt is disregarded everywhere. No one cares for Nawaz Govt going to UN. For last months, our Govt went to UN almost on daily basis. Anything happened? Nothing. Zilch.
    Only if our military goes then the UN knows that the real power behind this border conflict is talking. But will it change much? This is the tragedy of Pakistan.

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  • Haider
    Oct 20, 2014 - 6:49PM

    @Gp65
    Do you want blame game for next 67 years too..We blame you…You blame us…Carry on……
    Pakistan and India have been in proxy wars since 67 years from Kashmir and Baluchistan. Bilateral efforts need to be made…”Taali Dono Hathon se Bajti hai”…

    Its unfair to treat your army and Indian media(Who have problem with Deepika cleavage) as truthful and angels…

    The country who goes mad when Bilawal Bhutto makes a statement on Kashmir… Doing Cross Border firing is nothing for a country when other country raises Kashmir issue Internationally…
    Cmon I also know how to play famous “Blame-Game”
    First we have to change our minds and stop treating us as angels and other as Devils…
    ISI vs Raw has continued for 67 years..ISI does exactly the same what RAW does and Raw does the same what ISI does…..Blaming each other will never suggest a solution…. Its a good attempt by Pakistan and needs to be appreciated.Recommend

  • NSR
    Oct 21, 2014 - 1:22AM

    Everyone keeps talking about last 67 years…but no one talks about last centuries and milleniums…why???

    Let it be known — For thousands of years, from Kailash Mansarovar to Kanyakumari was Bharat / India…Muslims came here to plunder… Kashmir never belonged to Kashmiris…they are just squatterers in a foreign land… So if you make a DNA test, then it will show that you are all from India/Bharat mothers…

    For a change, Pakistan must stop wasting their resources on arms and ammunition and use it to eradicate polio, train its citizens in a honest trade so they can get a decent wage, develop projects to help education and poor people…

    So my best advice is to go on and improve the life of Pakistanis instead of wasting money on war… If anyone wants to move to Pakistani side, then are free to go…India already took in most of the Hindus, Sikhs, Christians coming from Pakistan side…Just look at the statistics of minorities in Pakistan and India after independence…

    Grant India MFN and start doing honorable trade (no drugs, fake currency, etc) so that both countries will benefit…

    This is the best possible solution for both countries…Recommend

  • AVMPolpot
    Oct 21, 2014 - 1:36AM

    @Haider: India Pakistan next 67 years
    +++++++++++;++++;;;
    India will be a super power Pakistan would befocussed at D Chowk.
    Tussle would be between grand children of NS and IK.
    FO would be writing to UN….its been 134 years……

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  • someone
    Oct 21, 2014 - 4:27AM

    Pakistan “offers”???? Should not it be “requested” ?

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  • Sanity
    Oct 21, 2014 - 10:55AM

    Reading the above comments, its quite obvious that Indian responses are full of arrogance and bigotry. I wonder why?

    Have they solved their problems that they criticise and insult Pakistan? Why not concentrate on the problem of clean water, lack of sanitation, health, shortage of power and health care. And yes, these are challenges faced by India at a much larger scale than Pakistan. Imagin 700 mill squatting in the open ?? Try drive through Delhi and Mumbay early mori=ning and see the Indian glory out in the open.

    India has been a collection of hundreds of RAJS and not a country. Muslim came and made it one country, rules for 800 years and converted half of Hindu into Muslims. This is the fact Indian can’t live with.

    The best way forwatrd is peace. Either learn to live with peace, or be ready for war. Option is yours.

    Pakistani leaders have shown too much restrains compared to Indian threats and insulting statements from BJP leaders. They behave like bullys. And bully always attack the weak and retreats once given a response.

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  • Raj
    Oct 21, 2014 - 2:24PM

    Every country has their responsible army and they are proud of it…but sadly,for my loving fellow neighbours,it’s army has a country…feels so pity.God bless u brothers.

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  • Tyggar
    Oct 21, 2014 - 2:37PM

    @Sanity:
    And bully always attack the weak and retreats once given a response.

    What do you then call Pakistan which has attacked India four times and surrendered or retreated each time?? Wannabe Bully?

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  • Haider
    Oct 21, 2014 - 5:03PM

    @AVMPOLPOT
    Benefits of Dharna will be visible after few months.FO thing good joke.While after 67 years country again goes mad when any tennis star states she doesn’t know each in and Times of India still hungry for cleavages of Bollywood actresses

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  • Sana
    Oct 21, 2014 - 5:26PM

    uh haha sure. Who is starting a war anyway. Overconfident. Dont underestimate our people though we seek no war. I dont know whats up with all the hate. I guess its your media that wont stop portraying Pakistanis as weirdos @Sunil:

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  • Sana
    Oct 21, 2014 - 5:33PM

    Thankyou for enlightening me with your knowledge on the topic. However, in the context it related to the broad objectives of the UN in its peacemaking role. In short, your sarcasm about UN’s not needing credibility is unwarranted and adds little to the topic but contempt. @Jor El:

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  • Sunil
    Oct 22, 2014 - 1:35AM

    @Sana: Our media is secular rubbish and I do not care what they say. I am a Hindu Kashmiri and I have not forgotten when you did to my family. Do not forget that what you call Pakistan and Bangladesh are occupied India, we have not forgotten. I hope soon your days will be over and as to the resolve of your people, we have stronger motive to win.

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  • Jor El
    Oct 22, 2014 - 6:56AM

    @Sunil: U r a living example that there is no shortage of idiots in India. Pakistan alone is not blessed with them …

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  • sana
    Oct 22, 2014 - 10:35AM

    @Sunil: but you see those who perpetrate such injustices arent always the same who you retaliate towards… Nothing anyone can say can take away your loss but casualties and atrocities have always been suffered on both sides. The oppressor never walks free and is noones friend.

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  • Hassan
    Oct 22, 2014 - 11:25AM

    I am not sure why so many Indians have to come here to comment on a pakistani new website. Don’t they have a website of their own.

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  • Jor El
    Oct 23, 2014 - 12:00AM

    @Hassan: So what’s stopping u from banning them ???

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