Thursday, March 23, 2023

Pakistan voices concern over Indian nuclear submarine patrol


ISLAMABAD: Pakistan on Thursday expressed concern over the first “deterrence” patrol of an Indian nuclear submarine.

Speaking at a press briefing in Islamabad, Foreign Office spokesperson Muhammad Faisal said this development marks the first actual deployment of ready-to-fire nuclear warheads in South Asia, which is a matter of concern not only for the Indian Ocean littoral states but also for the international community.

He said aggressive statements from the top Indian leadership highlights threats to strategic stability in South Asia and raises questions about responsible nuclear stewardship in India.

He said the increased frequency of missile tests by India, aggressive posturing and deployment of nuclear weapons calls for an assessment of non-proliferation benefits resulting from the Indian membership of the Missile Technology Control Regime.

The spokesperson said Pakistan is committed to the objective of the strategic stability in South Asia and believes the only way forward for both the countries is to agree on measures for nuclear and missile restraint.

At the same time no one should be in doubt about Pakistan’s resolve and capabilities to meet the challenges posed by the latest developments both in the nuclear and conventional realms in South Asia.

To a question, Mohammad Faisal expressed grave concern over unabated atrocities by the Indian forces in occupied Kashmir. He said the world community should come forward to stop India from using lethal weapons, pellet guns and brute force against innocent civilians in the held valley.

The spokesperson said after the United Nations Human Rights Office report, the United Kingdom’s parliamentary body’s report has also pointed out grave human rights situation in occupied Kashmir where a number of marked and unmarked graves are being found as a result of the ongoing Indian brutalities.

He said Indian forces are acting in complete immunity under draconian laws and there are no legal rights for the number of Kashmiri inmates languishing in Indian jails.

Replying to a question about the follow up of the prime minister’s visit to China, the spokesperson said a high level Pakistan delegation will have talks with their counterparts in Beijing to sort out technical matters and finalise the modalities of further enhancing the existing bilateral strategic cooperation between the two countries in diverse fields.

Responding to a question about the proposed peace talks in Moscow over Afghanistan, the spokesperson said a Pakistan delegation led by an additional secretary will attend the dialogue.

The spokesperson said Taliban leader Mullah Bradar was released to give an impetus to the peace and reconciliation process in Afghanistan. He said Pakistan has always been emphasizing the need for seeking a negotiated settlement of the Afghan issue with the participation of all the stake holders.

He said it is a matter of concern that a recent American report points out that the Afghan administration and the foreign forces are losing their control over the security situation in Afghanistan.


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