India pulls out of SAARC summit over ‘crossborder’ terrorism
According to a statement issued by Indian Ministry of External Affairs, India has conveyed to current South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) chair in Nepal that increasing cross border attacks and “growing interference in the affairs of member states by one country have created an environment that is not coducive to the successful holding of 19th SAARC Summit in Islamabad in November”.
Overlooking its own interference in Balochistan and arrest of its agents in Pakistan, Indian MEA maintained that regional co-operation “can only go forward in an atmosphere free of terror”.
Regional cooperation and terror don’t go together. India pulls out of SAARC Summit in Islamabad pic.twitter.com/jabKoaBegJ
— Vikas Swarup (@MEAIndia) September 27, 2016
Pakistan’s response In its response, Pakistan’s Foreign Office termed the Indian announcement ‘unfortunate’ but denied receiving any official communication about the non-participation. As for the excuse used by India, the FO reminded the Indian leadership about the arrest of its spies in Pakistan, its financing of terrorism and its interference in Pakistan’s internal matters.
Just yesterday, Indian Minister for External Affairs, Sushma Swaraj termed Pakistan an ‘exporter of terror’; advised Pakistan to abandon the Kashmir dream and also mentioned supposed “human rights violations in Balochistan” in her speech at UN General Assembly. Her mention of Balochistan was condemned by Pakistan’s Foreign Office and the country’s permanent representative to UN, Maleeha Lodhi as interference in Pakistan’s internal affairs and violation of UN principles.
71stUNGA Indian EAMs reference to Pakistan’s province of Balochistan is a violation of UN principles and International law — SpokespersonMOFA (@ForeignOfficePk) September 26, 2016
Raising Balochistan,an internal matter, is a blatant violation of the principles of the UN charter and international norms. — Maleeha Lodhi (@LodhiMaleeha) September 26, 2016