Rajnath Singh’s statement highly unfortunate, irresponsible: FO

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Staff Report

ISLAMABAD

Reacting on Indian Defence Minister statement over a possible change in its “no first use” nuclear policy Foreign Office spokesperson Dr Muhammad Faisal on Saturday said that the substance and timing of the Indian Defence Minister’s statement is highly unfortunate and reflective of India’s irresponsible and belligerent behaviour.

On Friday, India’s Defence Minister Rajnath Singh made an indirect threat of nuclear conflict, which showed Narendra Modi’s growing frustration at his ill-conceived move to strip Occupied Kashmir of its autonomy on August 5.

Though Singh didn’t name any country, it is understood the threat was directed at Pakistan.

“Pokhran is the area which witnessed Atal Ji’s firm resolve to make India a nuclear power and yet remain firmly committed to the doctrine of ‘No First Use’,” Singh tweeted.

“It further exposes the pretense of their No First Use policy, to which we have never accorded any credence,” according to a statement issued by FO spokesperson.

Dr Faisal said No First Use pledge is non-verifiable and cannot be taken at face value, especially when development of offensive capabilities and force postures belie such claims.

The Spokesperson said Pakistan has always proposed measures relating to nuclear restraint in South Asia and has eschewed measures that are offensive in nature.

Pakistan will continue to maintain a credible minimum deterrence posture.

Separately, Special Assistant to Prime Minister (SAPM) on Information and Broadcasting Firdous Ashiq Awan on Saturday said that Indian defence minister’s statement reflects the extremist ideology of RSS which can go to the extent of putting the world peace at stake to accomplish its nefarious designs.

The Indian defence minister’s statement came in the middle of a crisis in Occupied Kashmir where Indian forces have enforced a clampdown since earlier this month after depriving the Muslim majority region of its special status granted under article 370.

“Rajnath Sigh’s statement is a threat to the entire world,” Awan said in a series of tweets calling on the international community to take strict notice of the irresponsible remarks which she said are an open challenge to international laws.

The SAPM said the UN Security Council meeting on Kashmir issue has proved that Kashmir is a disputed territory at global level, adding, that the meeting has exposed the Indian claims that Kashmir is an internal matter of India.

The Special Assistant said the voice of the Kashmiris, which had been suppressed by India, resonated at the world highest diplomatic forum.

She said Prime Minister Imran Khan has emerged as the true spokesperson of Kashmiris.