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India blames Pakistan for terrorism, rejects peace initiative

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UNITED NATIONS: Denying Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s claim that Pakistan is the primary victim of terrorism, Indian Minister of External Affairs Sushma Swaraj on Thursday said ‘it is actually a victim of its own policies of breeding and sponsoring terrorists’.

 

Speaking at the 70th session of United Nations General Assembly (UNGA), she said, “It was stated that Jammu and Kashmir is under foreign occupation. It is, except that the occupier in question is Pakistan”.

“In fact, India’s reservations about the proposed China-Pakistan Economic Corridor stem from the fact that it passes through Indian territory illegally occupied by Pakistan for many years,” she added.

Swaraj responded to Prime Minister Sharif’s four-point peace initiative with just one point, urging Pakistan to “give up terrorism”.

“We do not need four points, we need just one — give up terrorism and let us sit down and talk,” she said.

Sushma Swaraj said the bilateral dialogue between the two countries has not progressed because Pakistan disregarded its commitments.

“Whether it was under the 1972 Simla Agreement, the 2004 Joint Declaration forswearing terrorism or more recently the understanding between our two Prime Ministers at Ufa. On each occasion, it is India that has extended the hand of friendship,” she said.

“India remains open even today to engage Pakistan on outstanding issues in an atmosphere free of terrorism and violence,” she added.

The external affairs minister of India also accused Pakistan of ceasefire violations and exchanges of fire along the Line of Control and the Working Boundary.

“The world knows that the primary reason for firing is to provide cover to terrorists crossing the border. It needs no imagination to figure out which side initiates this exchange.”

Swaraj blamed Pakistan for shifting responsibilities of serious challenges it faces on others.

She claimed Pakistan uses terrorism as a ‘legitimate instrument of statecraft’.

“The world watches with concern as its consequences have spread beyond its immediate neighbourhood. All of us stand prepared to help, if only the creators of this monster wake up to the dangers of what they have done to themselves,” she concluded.

 

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