Pak Cabinet discusses tension with India post surgical strikes
Islamabad : Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif today called a special Cabinet meeting to discuss the latest tension with India and the situation on the LoC, a day after Indian Army conducted surgical strikes on terror launch pads in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir.
The Prime Minister chaired the meeting, which is “expected to put across collective response of the nation to the challenge thrown by the latest events,” Radio Pakistan reported.
In their remarks before the meeting, members of the Cabinet reiterated the resolve of the government to defend the motherland at all costs.
Advisor on Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz said support to the “just struggle of the Kashmiri people would remain priority of Pakistan and it would not back down on this account”.
He said India is indulging in “diversionary tactics” in a bid to deflect attention of the international community from its “brutalities” against Kashmiris.
He added Pakistan would confront India diplomatically but “our armed forces are also fully prepared to defend the country”.
Defence Minister Khawaja Muhammad Asif reiterated that Pakistan does not want escalation of tension but it is “ready to meet any eventuality”.
He said Pakistan would respond “befittingly” to any firing by India across the Line of Control (LoC).
The Defence Minister said India is displaying “irresponsible attitude” and trying to play to the gallery in a bid to “hoodwink” its public opinion.
He said India cannot suppress legitimate aspirations of Kashmiri people.
In a first, India carried out surgical strikes on seven terror launch pads across the LoC on the intervening night of September 28 and 29, with the Army saying it inflicted “significant casualties” on terrorists preparing to infiltrate from PoK, days after Prime Minister Narendra Modi warned Uri attack would not go unpunished.
Minister for Commerce Khurram Dastgir said India is creating artificial tension in its attempt to divert attention of the world from its atrocities against Kashmiris.
Minister for Kashmir Affairs Chaudhry Barjees Tahir said the world pledged right to self-determination through UN resolutions decades back and now the fifth generation of Kashmiris is protesting for this right. He said Indian policy of suppression of legitimate struggle of Kashmiris would neither benefit India nor the region.
Secretary Foreign Affairs Aizaz Chaudhry is expected to brief the Cabinet on the Kashmir issue and tensions between Pakistan and India along the LoC.
The Cabinet meeting came amid reports that Pakistan’s UN Ambassador Maleeha Lodhi is meeting the world body’s chief Ban Ki-moon to inform him about the “continued provocations” by India along the LoC.